Rangers - 601 000 000 - 7 12 0The Rangers batted around in the first inning against Wakefield (2-8-7-0-2, 34), rapping six consecutive hits and scoring six runs.
Red Sox - 000 100 100 - 2 6 1
The first hit, a one-out single by Michael Young, came after the home plate umpire Bruce Dreckman blew a call on an obvious strikeout. Dreckman ruled a foul ball, though replays showed that Young missed the pitch by at least a foot. Young also ran to first after the ball got away from catcher Kevin Cash, indicating that he knew he had swung and missed. A correct call would have given Boston two outs and no one on -- and who knows how the game might have turned out?
But even after Young singled, Wakefield could not retire the Rangers, who were swinging early in the count, and making it work. Down 6-0, Wake allowed three hits on three pitches to start the third, and that was the end of his night.
The pen quieted the Arlington bats, but Hunter (6.2-5-2-2-1, 108) and the pen had little trouble with the Sox. Two solo homers -- J.D. Drew in the fourth and Bill Hall in the seventh -- accounted for the runs. Daniel Nava singled and walked twice, but the top of the order was silent. The 1-4 hitters were 0-for-17.
Tommy Hunter / Tim Wakefield
Hunter is a 24-year-old right-hander in his 3rd big league season. He joined the Rangers on June 5 this year and has made seven starts, allowing a total of only 11 earned runs (2.34 ERA).Scutaro, SS
Hunter has faced the Red Sox twice: August 14, 2008 (9 R in 1.2 IP) and July 21, 2009.
The Rangers (50-38) lead the AL West, 4.5 GA of the Angels and 7.5 GA of Oakland. They were swept by the Orioles -- four games at home -- right before the break.
No other AL East team plays tonight. The Rays and Yankees start a weekend series in New York tomorrow.
1994 - White Sox manager Gene Lamont accuses Cleveland slugger Albert Belle of using a corked bat. The bat is confiscated and locked in the umpires' dressing room. The Spiders know the bat is corked and pitcher Jason Grimsley is sent on a mission: to go through a hatch in the clubhouse ceiling and along the crawl space with a flashlight in his mouth, and hope there is a hatch in the umpires' room's ceiling, as well. There was, and Grimsley switched bats, leaving one of Paul Sorrento's in the room. The switch was discovered immediately, of course, and Belle was suspended for seven games. Grimsley later said: "That was one of the biggest adrenaline rushes I've ever experienced. I went skydiving once, and I can compare it to that. ... My heart was going 1,000 miles a second."
Laura and I were at Fenway for Belle's return from his suspension (we had wanted to see some games before the strike). It was the second game of an August 7 doubleheader. Belle got the usual jeers when he came to bat in the first inning -- and then he absolutely crushed Gar Finnvold's 1-2 pitch to left -- over the wall, over the screen, maybe over the parking lot next door. It was a friggin' moon shot! I can't be sure, but I recall a lot of fans standing (because a blast like that lifts you up no matter who hits it), simply shaking their heads and clapping as Belle trotted smugly around the bases. I'd have to say it was one of my favourite moments at any game. The Sox blew a 9-6 lead in the eighth, both teams scored in the 11th, and then Cleveland got five in the top of the 12th, aided by a Mo Vaughn error and won 15-10. The players went on strike five days later.