10/16/10 12:51 AM ET
Rangers look to get off mat vs. Yankees
By Mike Bauman / MLB.com
Game 2, to be televised on TBS, has a scheduled 3:07 p.m. CT start time, so it will open roughly 16 hours after the Rangers saw a five-run lead turn into a 6-5 loss to the Yankees in Game 1 of the ALCS. In Game 2, Texas will start Colby Lewis against New York's Phil Hughes.
"We'll go to sleep tonight and come back [Saturday] and fight just as hard as we did today," Rangers manager Ron Washington promised. "Hopefully we'll get better results.
"I told them to keep their heads up. They played to the last out and we live to fight again. That's it. My team, they bounce back. They are very resilient."
Texas will have to be resilient to get over this one. It had a 5-0 lead after six innings and a 5-1 lead after seven, but a five-run New York rally in the eighth beat the Rangers. The first three relievers Washington used in that inning each failed to record an out.
This game was distinctly reminiscent of Game 1 in the Yankees' AL Division Series sweep over the Twins. New York was shut out for five innings by Francisco Liriano and trailed 3-0 going into the sixth. But it scored four runs in the sixth and eventually won 6-4. Given what subsequently occurred, it could easily be argued that the Twins never fully recovered from losing a game that seemed to be in hand for them.
Another come-from-behind victory could give the Yankees additional confidence, but they don't need additional confidence. They led the Majors in comeback victories in the regular season with 48. Three of their four victories in this postseason have been comeback victories. And they have come from behind in 10 of their 15 victories in the last two postseasons.
They have now won nine straight postseason games against the Twins, but they have won 10 straight postseason games against the Rangers.
"We have a veteran clubhouse that knows how to react to whatever situation we are in," manager Joe Girardi said Friday night. "Some might feel we were fortunate to come out with a win [in Game 1], but I thought our club played hard and kept playing and playing and playing. And you try to build on it [Saturday]."
While the Yankees will be trying to build on Friday night's outcome, the Rangers will be trying to reverse it. There can be reasons for optimism in both clubhouses. Both of Saturday's starters fared well in their initial postseason starts. Lewis pitched five shutout innings against Tampa Bay, but he received a no-decision in what eventually was a Texas loss. Hughes threw seven shutout innings against Minnesota in winning the clinching game of that series.
The Rangers had it all going for them in the opener -- coming off their first victory in a postseason series, a boisterous crowd of 50,930 on hand and a strong starting performance from C.J. Wilson. But because of the Yankees' relentless comeback abilities, the Rangers find themselves needing a comeback of their own. They have already achieved a breakthrough postseason series victory, but one thing that they have not done this October is win a postseason game at home.
"You know, you've got to be able to put this behind you and come back and those guys have all been able to do that and I expect that again [Saturday]," Washington said.
This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.