Texas Rangers‘ ace Yu Darvish had his eighth win of the season sitting right in front of him just waiting to be plucked, but a two-run home run by Arizona Diamondbacks‘ Didi Gregorius meant Darvish would get a no decision on Monday.
Darvish looked good for most of the night, he picked up 14 strikeouts, a career high, but things fell apart in the eighth inning. He had a 4-2 lead coming into the inning, but that disappeared after a Wil Nieves single and Gregorius’ blast. With tonight’s outing Darvish’s earned run average has climbed just over 3.00.
The Rangers probably aren’t concerned at all about Darvish, but this is the kind of game you would like to see him lock down. If you are the ace and you are given the lead, you have to make it last.
On the good side, it was Darvish’s fifth game this season with double-digit strikeouts and he leads the majors in punch-outs with 105. He also didn’t walk a batter on Monday and that is the first time he has achieved that since opening day against the lowly Houston Astros.
Looking at Darvish, I see a guy that is just below the very best pitchers the American League has to offer right now. Guys like Clay Buchholz and Matt Moore are just a notch above him in the Cy Yound award race again, right now. Who knows what the next four months hold in store, but I think the heat in Texas might just slow down the Darvish train a bit.