The Texas Rangers beat the Baltimore Orioles on Thursday night 5-3 thanks to seven hits for extra bases. The win helped Texas avoid being swept by Baltimore at Camden Yards.
With its victory, Texas is now 63-46 on the season, while the Orioles dropped to 61-46. The Rangers won their season series with the Orioles, which gives them the tiebreaker for home field advantage over the AL East leaders for the postseason, if they meet.
Jeff Banister said the tiebreaker could be big in October, but right now, it is nothing to think about.
Baltimore showed its long ball strength with seven solo home runs during the season. However, the Rangers pitchers kept players off base, making the home runs not hurt as much.
During the first two games of this series, Texas batters scored just three runs on two hits for extra bases. However, on Thursday the batting order came alive with six doubles on the night. The Rangers are only 25th in doubles in the Majors, with 163 for the season.
Jonathan Lucroy the newly acquired catcher for the Rangers hit his first home run for the team. The home run is estimated to have traveled 409 feet into the left field stands.
The home run was No. 14 on the season for Lucroy, which is the second time in his seven years in the big leagues he has reached 14 home runs.
However, Baltimore’s Mark Trumbo leads the Majors in home runs with 31 as he hit a towering shot during the fifth off Pedro Alvarez.
Texas plays Houston next in a battle between first and second in the AL West. Martin Perez a southpaw who is 7-7 with an ERA of 4.22 will start for the Rangers.
This season the Rangers have won 9 of 10 against Houston and lead the Astros by 6 ½ games. Perez is 6-2 with an ERA of 1.88 in seven career starts versus Houston.
Baltimore starts a road trip of 10 games on Friday against the Chicago White Sox. The Orioles will send Yovani Gallardo to the mound. Gallardo is 3-3 with an ERA of 5.70 on the season.
The division races and wildcard chases are heating up as August begins. With just less than two months of the regular season left, each game is becoming more and more important for those looking to reach the postseason.