Jose Trevino has first MLB hit. Who will get the ball?
A tip of the cap to the Texas Rangers and Colorado Rockies, who turned in nine innings on Father's Day Eve in a cool 2 hours, 42 minutes.
It was family day Saturday for the Rangers, so maybe that was part of it, too. The players could have fun with their teammates and families and still get the kiddos home in time for their normal bedtime.
You think players can't operate without their routine. Try taking a 1-year-old or 3-year-old off their routine.
Speaking of routine ... here's some Rangers Reaction from a 5-2 victory.
1.Adrian Beltre brought the Texas Rangers out of a tie and into a two-run lead in the eighth inning Saturday with, what else, an RBI triple.
Colorado Rockies right fielder Carlos Gonzalez initially thought he would catch the flyball to right field, and then realized too late that it would hit of the wall. It bounded over his head, and then he and center fielder Charlie Blackmon both grabbed to throw the ball in.
Beltre's 39-year-old legs managed the trek without incident.
During a pitching change, Beltre was lifted for pinch runner Ryan Rua.
"I'll tell you what, though, that's probably the first time I've seen somebody hit a triple get pinch run for. That's for sure," he said. 'It might be a first. That's OK. It was good to get it."
As unlikely as it was, it's not the most unlikely triple in Rangers history. That one belongs to Bengie Molina, the catcher acquired in late June 2010, and hit cycle-clinching triple a Fenway Park.
It's not even close.
It also required a misplay, as the ball bounced around the triangle in center fielder long enough for Molina to plow to third. The throw to third was wide, too.
Beltre was playing third base for the Boston Red Sox that night.
"I was playing third, yes. ... What are you trying to say?" Beltre said. "To be honest, I was shocked that he made it. There's no way he's going to get here safe, but he did."
Unlike Beltre, though, Molina didn't survive his long run and had to leave the game with a leg injury. The Rangers also needed Beltre's triple more than they needed Molina's.
Beltre's helped snapped a seven-game losing streak, though he had help from the starting pitcher.
2. Mike Minor hadn't pitched in a week, by virtue of two off days and the Rangers again trying to limit his innings in his return season to an MLB starting rotation, he was and as good as he has been all season.
Minor has long believed that he doesn't need the extra rest he has been afforded through the use of a sixth starter or the manipulation of the rotation via off days. A glance at the remainder of the first-half schedule shows only one instance where he might have to pitch on normal rest, and the Rangers could probably avoid that.
And his performance Saturday on extra rest, his best of the season, will probably give the Rangers more evidence that that's the way to proceed with Minor.
The numbers, though, show that he has pitched worse on extended rest — six or more days. Saturday bucked the trend.
Minor had allowed only two runs on three hits through six innings Saturday, runs made possible by a balk and a wild pitch, before the Rockies opened single, double. But he got out of it without a run scoring, and finished with an efficient 102 pitches in seven innings.
"I felt like he was still strong," manager Jeff Banister said. "He'd earn that opportunity to pitch through that."
Even though he's 30 and has been in the majors since 2010, Minor fits into the Rangers' 2018 development plan. He's the only member of the Opening Day rotation with a contract that brings him back for 2019.
They signed him to a three-year, $28 million contract to be a starter after spending 2017 as a reliever, and at that salary could be an amazing bargain if the Rangers take the leash off him.
That's the plan. That's why he's pitching on extra rest more often than not. His start Saturday on six days' rest is likely more of the evidence the Rangers will use to keep giving a day or two between starts the rest of the way.
3. Rookie catcher Jose Trevino is a big-leaguer now and will probably stay with the Rangers for at least a couple weeks while Carlos Perez's sprained right ankle heals. The Rangers are in development mode, but they aren't going to let their top catcher in the minors play only a couple times a week the rest of the season.
Trevino made his first career start Saturday after debuting Friday once Perez was injured. Trevino had his first career hit in the seventh inning Saturday, hitting a grounder just far enough away from Rockies all-world third baseman Nolan Arenado to drive in the game-tying run with two outs.
The bat is where Trevino needs to develop most, though there are some things he can work on defensively despite winning the past two minor-league Gold Gloves.
Trevino has never had trouble putting the bat on the ball, but he has never hit much. The aim now is to get him driving the ball more and using the middle of the more.
He is noticing improvement even though his numbers are lagging. He trusts that what he's working on will work, and a lot times that's half the battle.
As for his first MLB hit, he isn't sure who will get the ball. A lot of people, he said, have a hand in it.
"I couldn't tell you if I was more excited to get the tying RBI or my first hit," Trevino said. "To get the RBI, you've got to get a hit."