Ranger Bats Sweep Tribe Out Of Town

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Ranger Bats Sweep Tribe Out Of Town
(Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)

For those fans luckily enough to have attended one of the first three games of the year, you were able to witness something special, three firework shows.

The organization has planned at least 12 post game firework shows after home games this season, but after the first week the Ranger bats have had three of their own.

The final installment was Thursday afternoons 12-8 victory over Cleveland, giving the Rangers a three game sweep of the Tribe.

The last time the Texas Rangers started the season 3-0 was 1996 when they went on to win their first seven games.  Not only that but remember 1996, that was the first time the organization won the AL West Division Title.  Not to mention that currently the Texas Rangers are the only remaining undefeated team in the American League.

These victories haven’t come without some problems.  The bats and entire offensive aspect have been amazing so far, the defense has been superb at times yet still a three error game will not do, and the pitching, aside from Millwood’s performance, has been a little so-so.

Yesterday the team needed every bit of their hitting to hold a Cleveland Indians team that has some real talent.

In the first two games of the series the team scored four runs in second inning in both games, the offense did this again scoring not only another four runs in the second inning but five runs in the first.

In the first inning facing the Indians newest pitcher Carl Pavano, the Rangers started hitting on the first pitch and didn’t stop.

Ian Kinsler started the game with a first pitch line-drive single to left, Michael Young followed with a double to right moving Kinsler to third.

Josh Hamilton drove in the first run of the game with a sacrifice fly to right field scoring Kinsler.  Cleaning up and making his first start as a Texas Ranger, Andruw Jones smashed the first pitch right back up the middle scoring Young.

Following a Nelson Cruz walk, Marlon Byrd hit his first home run of the season and the first up onto the grassy hill in center field, a three-run bomb giving the Rangers a 5-0 lead.

Leading off the second inning the Rangers utility infielder Omar Vizquel, making his Rangers debut drew a full count walk.  Kinsler followed and continued to hot streak by driving the pitch to deep left center field and increasing the lead to 7-1.

Following a Young single and Hamilton walk the Indians' coaches had seen enough from Pavano and took him out after recording only three outs in the game.

However relief pitcher Zack Jackson couldn’t stop the bleeding either, Jones singled, Cruz hit a sacrifice fly, and Byrd's fielders choice scored Hamilton and gave the Rangers a 9-1 lead after two innings.

The Cleveland Indian bats were not without their own power, Kelly Shoppach solo in the 2nd, Grady Sizemore two 2-run homers in the 3rd and 6th, Victor Martinez solo in the 7th, and Travis Hafner solo in the 9th.

The Rangers added two more runs in the 5th from back-to-back RBI singles from Vizquel and Kinsler.

The final run was scored in the 8th when Jones led the inning off with a double and Byrd knocked him in with his own double.

On the pitching end the Rangers got a solid outing from Brandon McCarthy going five innings allowing three runs on two home runs and striking out seven.  The bullpen, however, allowed five runs over the final four innings, which are the type of numbers that will lead to some lopsided losses this season.

But the story of the opening series has been the offense, through the first three games the Ranger bats have scored 29 runs on 37 hits and 18 of those hits going for extra bases.

Ranger Series Highlights

Ian Kinsler: .500 AVG. (7-14), .929 SLUG., 3 doubles, 1 Home Run, 6 RBI

Michael Young: .417 AVG. (5-12), 2 doubles, 2 RBI, 3 runs

Nelson Cruz: .364 AVG. (4-11), .909 SLUG., 2 HRs, 4 RBI, 4 runs

Jarrod Saltalamacchia: .429 AVG. (3-7), 1.000 SLUG., 1 double, 1 RBI, 2 runs

Elvis Andrus: .375 AVG. (3-8), . 875 SLUG., 1 double, 1 Home Run, 2 RBI, 3 runs

Marlon Byrd: .333 AVG. (3-9), .889 SLUG., 2 doubles, 1 Home Run, 5 RBI, 2 runs

The Rangers will attempt to continue their winning streak with a three-game series in Detroit that begins Friday at 12:05 CST.

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