Who says you can’t have a little fun even when your team is down 17-5?
Not David Murphy, that’s for sure.
While I’m sure that the Texas Rangers didn’t want to be at the wrong end of a blowout on Tuesday, at least they were able to get some amusement of it. The team had burned through four relievers after rookie Justin Grimm lasted just 1.2 innings while allowing eight runs against the Boston Red Sox, and by the time it came to the eighth inning, no pitcher they’d used had managed to complete a full scoreless inning.
If only they’d called on their left fielder a little sooner …
Taking the mound for the first time in his MLB career, Murphy came armed with a fastball in the mid-to-high 70s, but it was the hurler’s ability to change speeds that really helped him succeed in this outing.
Just ask Mike Carp, who was caught looking on a nasty 1-2 curveball (that PITCHf/x called a change-up … but I mean, the tech wasn’t really built for these situations, you know?) for the first out of the inning. The grin on Murphy’s face afterwards was simply priceless.
The best part? The Red Sox outfielder actually got himself thrown out of the game for arguing the call.
Well, I suppose if I were a professional hitter getting stuck out by another professional hitter, perhaps I would have been a little upset too.
Not only was Murphy the only Rangers pitcher to throw a full scoreless inning, his 12 strikes on 20 pitches was also arguably the most efficient pitching performance on the team on this night, outside of Jason Frasor recording a pair of outs on 13 pitches.
Considering that the one-time pitcher is still posting a meager .223/.269/.388 triple-slash this season, this little detour from the norm surely provides some much-needed relief from what had been a disappointing season for the veteran outfielder at the plate thus far in 2013.
What it does show, on the other hand, is that even in the most dismal of losses, the Rangers are still able to have some fun playing this game. Though it might sound like an un-quantifiable cliche, it’s that kind of looseness and attitude that might just help them forget nights like Tuesday and get right back to work.