The Home Stretch

After spending the last 25 games beating up on cream-puff competition, the Rangers find themselves tied atop the AL West with 25 to play. Five of those 25 are against the team they’re tied with, the Oakland A’s.

For their part, Oakland has pulled even in the standings by taking it to some quality competition. After dropping 2 of 3 to Baltimore, they took 3 of 4 from Detroit and swept Tampa. If not for a blown save against the Tigers, they’d have rattled off 7 straight wins against 2 very good teams (8 straight if you throw in yesterday’s win against Texas).

To this point the Rangers have proven that they’re good enough to win the first 5 months of the season. Now they’ve got to win the 6th against teams that are trying to do the same thing.

Starting a week from yesterday, they’ve got 3 against the Pirates (.584 W%), 3 against the A’s, and 4 in Tampa (where the Rays have a .629 W%). That 10-game stretch could prove vital to the Rangers’ playoff hopes.

Outside of Texas, Oakland only has to contend with the Astros, the Angels, the Twins, and the Mariners the rest of the way. Those teams might be looking to play spoiler, but you can’t necessarily count on it.

Between now and September 20th, the Rangers will have a lot to say about what kind of team they are. They’ll either take care of their own business or they’ll stumble, fall, and fade down the stretch.

Wherever they are at the end of the month, you can bet that it’s where they deserve to be.

Press on, Rangers fans.

Mike Luna is a Staff Writer for He can be reached at or on Twitter @dying_robot.
Mike Luna

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