Leading the AL West by 7 games are the Texas Rangers?

So, I know I said in my last post that it is always hard for me to hop on the Texas Ranger bandwagon. I know I also made a reference to them blowing close games, or games they should win in the closing innings in the game. I don't know what has happened to the Texas Rangers, but they are playing really inspired baseball lately. Honestly I'm shocked that, so far, they have kept up their winning ways so far after the all-star break. Now, if the Rangers' winning ways come to an end soon after this article, I'll stop being so nice to them. But seriously, the Texas Rangers are really doing something here. The addition of Cliff Lee has really inspired the Texas Ranger pitching staff. C.J. Wilson is pitching phenomenal, Tommy 'Big Game' is perfect, Colby Lewis (great name) is throwing good stuff, and of course Cliff Lee give you nothing short of a great outing every time he steps on the mound. The only pitcher that still needs to step is Scott Feldman. The Rangers ace last year, and this year's opening day starter as yet to wake up this year. I was unable to see his last start, but maybe he just isn't as inspired as the rest of the team for whatever reason. My biggest example here is Chris Davis. Possibly one of the worst hit less streaks in the majors, but he still goes out there every at bat and tries to make the most out of it. Even when he gets thrown out he makes it exciting. When Chris Davis rounded third the other night to head for home, the ball was already in the air to the catcher. There is a good chance Davis knew this about halfway to the plate. But Davis didn't try some elusive slide, or retreating back to third, no. Davis lowered his shoulder and trucked the Angel's catcher. Granted, he was still out by a mile, but just the excitement he created, and the passion that was involved speaks for itself.

Despite the Rangers' winning ways, and good stories that surround the team, they will always be second banana to football in the state of Texas, because not just in local, but national news what was the big story of the day July 26? Not the Rangers huge win over the Angels. Not Tommy Hunter remaining perfect. No, the headline of all media was the Dez Bryant wouldn't carry Roy Williams' pads after practice. I mean really? That is the story everyone has to hear? Roy Williams only caught a few more balls then Bryant last year, and that's with Bryant being out by suspension for illegal meetings with an agent. Which has become a big deal this summer in collegiate sports, so you can't blame the guy. It just goes to show that any story is a story for the Dallas Cowboys. Seriously though, Dez not carrying pads made more of a story than Martellus Bennett taking naked pictures of himself that are now all over the Internet, talk about having it out for the guy.

Now, back to the Texas Rangers, the most pleasant surprise of the local sports world. Now, lets be honest here, did anyone really expect the Rangers to be where they are now? 7 games ahead of the Angels, and first place in the AL West? Did anyone expect the Texas Rangers to land the big deal with Cliff Lee to steal him from the Yankees? Oh, and may I add that the Rangers are doing this with no management? Josh Hamilton is a front runner for AL MVP. Tommy Hunter is perfect so far this year. The stories just keep going on and on, its hard not to root for the Texas Rangers. I mean, for the first time in years I find myself wanting to play baseball or go to the batting cages. Because, if there is anything that inspires me, it is people who play or speak with passion. If someone talks to you passionately, and they firmly believe what they are saying, it doesn't matter what it is about, I find myself agreeing with it, or at least having the up most respect. When I watch the Texas Rangers play baseball, not only can I sit through an entire 9+ innings, but the way they play inspires me to go out and get to the batting cages. Just like watching Landon Donovan score that goal against Algeria made me want to break out the soccer ball from 3rd grade and kick it around.

I've been down on the Rangers for a long, long time. Probably because they always seemed to finish last, and worst of all, they knew they were. No one likes a loser. Someone had to come out and say it. DFW fans will root for a winner, and fully support winning baseball. Attendance numbers have steadily been increasing to watch the Rangers do something magical this year. This year the Texas Rangers are playing passion, and best of all...they're winning. Despite all their winning ways, and all the great stories, they will never triumph over the dumbest Dallas Cowboys story, but if it means anything they are a close 2nd. And I will officially admit this...I am now on the Texas Rangers bandwagon, and I hope they ride this passionate play all the way through the season, and maybe a few playoff victories.

Also, on a side note I would like to welcome back Asher Feltman, a fellow writer, back to the DFW area. I hope his batteries are re-charged so he can give you more in-depth stories about the Texas Rangers!

-Colby

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