2012 AL Wild Card, Baltimore 5, Texas 1

It’s still sinking in that Texas is out of the postseason already.  It’s still sinking in they didn’t take the West.  It was a mixture of being shocked and stunned.  The Rangers led the AL West alone since April 9 and had the lead for 178 days.  Including regular and postseason play, they were 4-10 in their last 14 games and lost their last 4 consecutive games.  They lost a series to Seattle, split a series with Oakland, lost a series to the Angels, and got swept in their final series of the season against Oakland.  They needed one of 3 in Oakland to get the division – couldn’t get that one.  Their starters there were Perez, Harrison, and Dempster.  The only shaky one of those 3 was Perez, and in his game there were only 4 total runs for the A’s.

It was frustrating watching the Seattle series that was lost b/c they were low scoring games but the Rangers had some many blown opportunities with runners in scoring position, and especially when there were less than 2 outs, and time after time after time the man on 3rd was left stranded.  There was a stat of them being 0 for 25 or something with RISP.

What can you say? The A’s earned it.  They were hot, the Rangers were not.

It’s only fair that I put this graphic up b/c I did it in 2010 when the Rangers were ridiculously outspent by the Yankees but still beat them in the ALCS

 

                                     2012  Team Payroll
Oakland $49,137,500
Texas $120,510,975

 

That’s insane.

Rangers have star power, practically the entire lineup, and much hype with Yu.  A’s biggest name? Cespedes?

What killed the Rangers?

  • 5th starter was a problem when Feliz and Colby went out for the season earlier in the season.  Oswalt, Perez, and Feldman all had their shot and all performed poorly.
  • Felt like Hamilton didn’t have as much as a all-star season.  He started out extremely hot but cooled down considerably in the second half.
  • Rangers could not come up with hits in scoring position, particularly the last month of the season and against Seattle.

It will be very interesting to see what happens in the offseason.  Where will Hamilton go? He was so hot at the beginning of the season, but the second half it was frustrating his over-aggressiveness at the plate kill him so consistently.  You could bet that the opposing pitcher would throw him an offspeed pitch a foot out of the zone on the first pitch, and you could bet that Josh would swing and miss at it.  I don’t think the Rangers will re-sign Hamilton, but regardless of who gets him I think his contract will be overpriced.

I hope Feliz and Colby will come back strong.  Time will tell..

In the meantime, postseason play goes on, and I think I may be rooting for Oakland a bit, considering they are the underdog – 5 rookie starting pitchers, the team payroll mentioned above which is last in the MLB, and they’re representing the West.  But, they’re down 0-2 to the Tigers right now and the next 3 would be in Detroit so not looking good there either..

As the Brooklyn Dodgers used to say, “Wait ’till next year!”

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