The Texas Rangers are 4-7 to start the month of June. With Wednesday night's loss to the Cleveland Indians, the Rangers have now lost three consecutive series in a row. This is the fifth time the Rangers have reached this dismal streak during the Adrian Beltre era.
After going 12-13 in the last 25 games and with 100-degree weather right around the corner, should the Rangers panic?
Travel back in time, a time in which the Rangers had Josh Hamilton, just two years ago. On June 13, 2011, the Rangers were in New York preparing for a series in which they would get swept by the Yankees and suffer a third consecutive series loss.
Going forward to a year later, they were coming off a series loss to the Oakland A's. This early-June series loss was, again, a third consecutive series loss.
Now, the Rangers suffered a Wednesday night defeat to the Cleveland Indians, dropping the series and their third consecutive series loss.
What's going on?
Look at Yu Darvish. In 2012, Darvish was 7-4 with a 3.72 ERA and 77 strikeouts after the final loss to the A's on June 7. Now, he is 7-2 with a 2.75 ERA and 118 strikeouts.
Derek Holland? 5-4 with a 5.05 ERA and 63 strikeouts up to the finale of that early June A's series. Now, he is 5-3 with a 3.11 ERA and 80 strikeouts.
The Rangers currently have two players with enough innings to qualify for the ERA title (one inning pitched per team game). In 2012, the season that ended with a one-game playoff loss to the Baltimore Orioles, the Rangers ended with three players that qualified: Darvish, Holland and Matt Harrison.
In 2011, the World Series year, the Rangers ended year the with a five-man rotation full of qualified pitchers.
On the other side of the ball, the Rangers are ranked No. 4 in home runs, seventh in batting average, seventh in extra base hits and 10th in RBI.
Are the Texas Rangers clutch?
(Refresh your memory on what a walk-off home run is—something the Rangers don't have in 2013.)
To analyze clutch, look into these eight statistical categories: clutch (how much better or worse a player does in high-leverage situations than he would do in a context-neutral environment), PO% (productive outs percentage—when a fly ball, grounder or bunt advances a runner with nobody out; when a pitcher bunts to advance a runner with one out [maximizing the effectiveness of the pitcher's at-bat]; or when a grounder or fly ball scores a run with one out), BA with two outs and RISP, BA in late+close games, BA in seventh or later, BA in eighth or later, BA in ninth or later and BA in extra innings.
PO%: .310 (17th in MLB)
BA with two outs and RISP: .254 (10th in MLB)
BA in late+close games: .247 (11th in MLB)
BA in seventh or later: .238 (19th in MLB)
BA in eighth or later: .220 (23rd in MLB)
BA in ninth or later: .199 (26th in MLB)
BA in extra innings: .145 (30th in MLB)
The resume that measures clutch rating of Rangers is a bit rocky. While the Rangers have the eighth-best batting average with two outs and runners in scoring position, they tend to fade late in the game. The Rangers are 29th in clutch rating, only ahead of the Los Angeles Angels.
While there is cause for concern, there should not be pandemonium yet. The Rangers have many role and key players on the disabled list. The team is currently without Michael Kirkman, Mitch Moreland, Alexi Ogando, Ian Kinsler, Matt Harrison, Neftali Feliz, Colby Lewis and Joakim Soria.
Bringing back Kinsler and Moreland would bode well for the offense, but the team's stats wouldn't drastically improve.
As the 2013 MLB trade deadline slowly, slowly approaches, anxious Rangers fans should hold off on hitting the the panic button until after July 31. Trust should be given to Jon Daniels more than ever. He's brought the team to where it is today, and he won't let the Rangers slip out of World Series contention.
And lastly, even with these recent struggles, the Rangers currently have the seventh-most wins in the MLB and are a game out of first place in the AL West.
Are you ready to hit the panic button? Feel free to leave a comment down below.
Note: All stats current as of June 13.
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