David Murphy Slaps the Game Winner as the Texas Rangers Outlast the Red Sox
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I have been a Texas Rangers fan my entire life. Well, except for when I was a kid and loved the A's, but that was just because they were the best team of the era and as a kid you always pick the winner.
It has not been easy being a Rangers' fan, and despite their debateably unexpected success last season, it is still not easy. I am convinced that even if the Rangers had beat the Giants the media would have come up with excuses as to why the Giants lost.
There has been no bigger moment than with the World Series appearance last season, but the past does little to help the present and future, so lets look at how the Rangers started their American League title defense.
As the commentators of today's game repeatedly pointed out, the Red Sox are widely considered the World Series favorite. This is no surprise with the players they acquired and the team they already had.
They are going to have a great season and may very well win it all, but today they had no such luck.
This Rangers team, who opted to start the season with a guy who is only one year removed from the bullpen, fought through adversity and brought down the giant.
It started with a terrible defensive play that is the part of entirely different discussion, and ended with the most underrated player on the team coming through once again.
How many games will the Rangers win this season?
What I loved most about this game was how the team fought back after going down early and often.
They went down two runs in the first, but tied it back up in the second. Down two more in the third, and answered with three more in the fourth. Lost the lead on a home run in the eighth, and answered with four more runs in the eight to close it out.
Obviously they will not be successful if they have to fight back every single game, but this team has acquired a swagger that I have never seen on a Rangers team before.
My only guess is that the World Series did it to them, but whatever it was I am sure glad it happened.
Now don't get me wrong, this is only one game out of 162, Josh Hamilton looks like he is disinterested right now, Michael Young obviously struggled in his new role and CJ Wilson did not perform to his exceptionally high standards, but it is still just one game.
The bullpen that is such a major question gave the team a chance to win, and that is about all we can ask for at this point.
As a side note to the commentators, it was the Rangers who added a bunch of runs after the fifth inning, not the Red Sox. It was also the Red Sox who used five relievers, and not the Rangers.
Finally, I have to give all the props in the world to David Murphy. I have regularly commented on how big of a class act Michael Young is, but David Murphy is right there with him.
Despite having consistently quality numbers he has never broken through as an everyday player.
However, the guy gives everything he has everyday, and this team would not have succeeded last year, and will not make it far this year, without him.
So my hat is off to David Murphy for his game winning double and to my beloved Rangers for the great start to a season. Opening Day is always sweet, but it is that much sweeter when your team wins.
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