How quickly the tides turn.
Back on April 17th, the Oakland Athletics were sitting pretty atop the American League West, sporting a gaudy 12-4 record. The Texas Rangers, meanwhile, were plugging along at a formidable clip themselves, winning nine of their first 14 games.
The early part of the 2013 campaign had the makings of another nose-to-nose seasonal battle between two ballclubs that clawed one another to the bone last season in an epic division title showdown.
One month later, however, the Rangers are continuing to flex their mighty muscles, undaunted by Oakland’s hot start. And the Athletics are the ones struggling to keep pace. Since that April 17th apex, the A’s have taken a beating physically and on the field, having gone 8-18 in the process, falling into a second-place tie with the Seattle Mariners in the AL West. Texas has opened up a seven-game lead on the A’s and looks locked in: They currently have the AL’s best record at 26-14.
This past midweek series at the Oakland Coliseum was important for both squads. The Athletics were looking to right their ship, while the Rangers were seeking a bit of revenge at the venue where the 2012 division crown slipped out of their collective gloves. Oakland took the first game of the series on Monday, but the Rangers bounced back to win the next two in decisive fashion.
Here are five things we learned about the Athletics during their series against the Texas Rangers.