The Texas Rangers upset the Tampa Bay Rays to advance to the Division Series.
Texas defeated the Tampa Bay Rays 7-1 in Game 2 of the American League Wild Card Series (ALWC) at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Florida, on Friday (May 5).
Texas, which took Game 2 following a 4-0 sweep in Game 1, swept the best-of-seven series with Tampa Bay. Tampa Bay (99-63, .613) edged Texas (90-72, .556) in the regular season, but the upset came in the postseason.
Texas starter Nathan Eovaldi was the difference. Iboldi shut down the Tampa Bay offense in 6⅔ innings, striking out eight and walking one. The only run he allowed was a single on three hits in the seventh inning.
Totaled 98 pitches, 68 strikes and 30 balls. Threw a four-seam fastball (37) that topped out at 96.1 mph (154.7 km/h) and averaged 94.9 mph (152.7 km/h), along with a splitter (27), curveball (21) and cutter (13), with the deciding pitches being the splitter and curve. Iboldi continued his big-game dominance, going 5-3 with a 2.90 ERA in 12 postseason games (7 starts, 50⅔ innings).
The Texas offense helped Iboldi, too. After being held scoreless by Tampa Bay starter Zach Eflin through three innings, Adolis Garcia broke the silence with a solo home run to left to lead off the fourth.
Leodis Taveras followed with a single, stole second and scored on Josh Young’s triple to right, and Texas extended its lead to 4-0 on rookie Evan Carter’s two-run homer to center.
In the fifth, after Corey Seager reached on a throwing error by second baseman Curtis Mead, Texas added a run when Robbie Grossman singled and Nathaniel Lowe was hit by a pitch to put runners on first and third.
The Rangers added two more runs in the sixth on three RBI singles by Young, Marcus Simeon and Seager. Young was 3-for-4 with two doubles and one RBI, while Seager was 2-for-4 with a double, one RBI and a walk.
For Tampa Bay, starter Eflin took the loss, allowing five runs (four earned) on eight hits (two home runs) with two walks and three strikeouts in five innings. The offense lacked cohesion as they managed just one run on eight hits. After a six-hit, no-run game one, the Rays totaled 14 hits and one run in game two.
Tampa Bay was swept by the Cleveland Cavaliers in the Wild Card Series last year as the offense was held to one run in two games. For the second straight year, the Rays were held to one run in two games and failed to advance to the Division Series. Since Game 2 of the 2021 Division Series against the Boston Red Sox, they have lost seven straight in the postseason, continuing a trend of weakness in big games.온라인바카라
Texas, meanwhile, will host the AL East champion Baltimore Orioles in a best-of-three best-of-five divisional series beginning Aug. 8.