Rangers vs. Tigers: Ryan Raburn Slams Homer, Detroit In Front

We just had ourselves one heck of a top of the third. Allow me to explain! It's my job to explain.

The Rangers came into the inning holding a 2-0 lead. It's not that Max Scherzer had been pitching poorly, and that Derek Holland had been pitching well; Max Scherzer had been pitching okay, and Derek Holland had been pitching poorly, but Holland had weaseled himself out of some jams. This works on two levels because Derek Holland's mustache makes him look like a weasel.

There would be no weaseling for Holland in the third. Delmon Young led off and lined out - perhaps foreboding, perhaps not. Miguel Cabrera followed with a double to center field that Josh Hamilton couldn't track down. That brought us to the weird part.

Holland got to a 1-2 count on Victor Martinez, and then threw a breaking ball down and inside. Martinez acted like the ball hit his pant leg, and trotted to first base. Meanwhile, the ball rolled to the backstop, and Miguel Cabrera took off from second, thinking that it was live. Cabrera got to third and, with Mike Napoli not really pursuing the ball, rounded third and slid into home without a throw.

Problem! The umpires all huddled to try and figure out what had happened, and they concluded that the ball hit Martinez. So they sent Martinez to first, and returned Cabrera to second. Jim Leyland wasn't a fan of this - Jim Leyland is a fan of runs - so he came out to argue, and his argument went on for a while. But in the end, it was fruitless, and the Tigers had no runs and two on.

And then Ryan Raburn made it all irrelevant when he followed with a homer. One can wonder whether Holland cooled down during the extended on-field delay, but more likely is that Holland was just not very sharp, and he threw a 1-2 high, inside fastball to Raburn that Raburn turned on and hit out down the left field line. It wasn't impressive, but they don't have to be impressive in Texas.

The Tigers wouldn't score in the inning again, but Holland was yanked with two outs in favor of Scott Feldman. His day ended with 76 pitches - 45 strikes - three runs, four walks, and zero strikeouts. Superb.

3-2 Detroit, bottom three. Max Scherzer has been sitting for a while.

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