Texas Rangers

The No. 1 reason the Rangers are better than expected

How, you might wonder, are the Texas Rangers a game above .500 and in second place in the American League West?

It should be obvious if you’ve been paying any kind of attention during the first two months of the season, including the teams four-game win streak and sweep of the Mariners on Wednesday.

They score and they score a lot.

The Rangers, who start a six-game road trip Friday in Anaheim, are scoring a major league-best 5.77 runs per game. Only the Minnesota Twins have scored more runs than the Rangers, 273 to 271. But the Twins have played two more games than the Rangers.

Even the mighty Houston Astros, who lead the league with 474 hits, have scored fewer runs than Texas. The Rangers are currently in the top five in batting average (.259), slugging percentage ( .472), OPS (.811), doubles (97), RBIs (261), stolen bases (35) and total bases (759). They’re also sixth in on-base percentage (.339) and seventh in home runs (76).

Through 47 games in 2018, the Rangers averaged 4.1 runs a game and finished 14th in the league with 4.5 a game, just above the league average.

Texas has scored 10 or more runs in a game nine times already. They only did it 14 times the entire 2018 season.

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Stefan Stevenson has been covering sports for the Star-Telegram since 1997. He spent five years covering TCU athletics, which included two BCS bowls, two trips to the college World Series and the move to the Big 12. He has covered the Texas Rangers since 2014 and started reporting on the Dallas Cowboys in 2016.