Adolis Garcia continues to be a bright light in an otherwise dim season for the Texas Rangers.
Garcia likely will get a chance to break the franchise rookie record for RBIs when the Rangers host the Los Angeles Angels in the second game of their three-game series on Wednesday night in Arlington, Texas.
Garcia drove in two runs in Texas’ 5-2 win in the series opener on Tuesday to give him 88 RBIs on the season and tie Pete Incaviglia’s club rookie record set in 1986.
Rangers manager Chris Woodward likely will remember Tuesday’s victory for the two sterling defensive plays Garcia made in right field.
Garcia crashed into the wall in foul territory just as he reached over the fence to snare a fly by David Fletcher for the final out of the second inning.
“I thought he dislocated his shoulder,” Woodward said. “He just pops right up, like no big deal.”
Garcia also caught a line drive and then doubled up Jack Mayfield as he tried to scamper back to first base in the fourth inning.
“He hasn’t been as good in the second half offensively, but the defense hasn’t changed a bit,” Woodward said. “I told him after the game, ‘That’s pretty special, what you’re able to do on a nightly basis. You show our entire team what we want out of our players.'”
Angels catcher Max Stassi has put on a show at the plate lately, homering in two of the past three games. He hit his 10th home run of the season on Aug. 1 but had only one more before going deep in a 6-5 loss to the visiting Seattle Mariners on Friday night.
He hit a two-run homer on Tuesday to account for the Angels’ runs.
“He got off to a great start, lost it for a bit, now he’s recapturing it,” Angels manager Joe Maddon said. “When you’re able to make adjustments on the fly during the major league baseball season, that’s a great learning experience, too.”
Angels rookie right-hander Janson Junk and Texas left-hander Taylor Hearn are scheduled to go head-to-head Wednesday for the second time this month.
Junk (0-1, 3.75 ERA) made his major league debut against the Rangers on Sept. 5, but it was Hearn (6-5, 4.55) who earned the win in a 7-3 victory after allowing three runs over a season-high seven innings.
Junk pitched well against the Rangers in his debut, but was let down by his defense when shortstop Luis Rengifo made a throwing error on what would have been the final out of the third inning for the Angels.
Instead, the Rangers (58-99) scored a run on the miscue, and DJ Peters followed with a three-run blast for a 5-0 lead. As a result four of the five runs Junk gave up in 3 2/3 innings were unearned.
Junk held the Chicago White Sox to one run and three hits in 4 1/3 innings on Sept. 15. He allowed three runs and four hits in four-plus innings on Sept. 22 against the Houston Astros, who pulled off a 9-5 win in 12 innings.
Hearn has also made two relief appearances against Los Angeles (74-83) this season, compiling a 4.50 ERA overall. In five career outings, including the one start, vs. the Rangers, Hearn is 1-0 with a 4.20 ERA.
He gave up three runs and four hits in 5 1/3 innings against the New York Yankees on Sept. 22, emerging without a decision in a game the Rangers lost 7-3.
–Field Level Media