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Rangers Vs Rays: Rangers Lead 2-1 In 6th.

Though the score is tight and low, "pitcher's duel" probably does not describe tonight's game between Texas and Tampa too well, so far.

Colby Lewis has struggled some both with his own command and with finding a strikezone which has at times seemed to be mobile, issuing his second, third, and fourth walks of the season. With quite a few big counts and fouled pitches, his pitch count has been driven up to 84 through the first five innings.

With all that in mind, it should probably be considered a blessing his only run allowed has come on a solo home run by Matt Joyce. He has five strikeouts to go with the performance, keeping that K:BB ration impressive.

Jeff Niemann has a similar story, with a pitch count at 91 so far. Ian Kinsler walked in his first appearance, followed by an Elvis Andrus double -- just missing a home run for the second straight night -- and Josh Hamilton single to make the game 2-0 in the first. Niemann has not been dominating, the Rangers just have not been able to punish him.

Since the Hamilton single, the Rangers have had just three baserunners, bringing none home despite two getting as far as third. The Rays' gloves (and the luck dragons) have not been particularly helpful to the Texas cause, pulling down a number of hard-hit balls for outs.

Without a dramatic uptick in efficiency, it seems this will soon be a battle of the bullpens.


Source: FanGraphs

Photographs by jamesbrandon, jdtornow, phlezk, flygraphix, mcdlttx, tomasland, and literalbarrage used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.