The Rangers got four straight hits with two outs in the 14th inning to rally for a 6-4 win over the Blue Jays on Friday at Rogers Centre. The best-of-five American League Division Series heads to Arlington with Texas up 2-0.
TORONTO -- Rangers second baseman Rougned Odor put together two excellent baserunning plays to manufacture a run in the second inning off Blue Jays starter Marcus Stroman in Texas' 6-4, 14-inning Game 2 win in the best-of-five American League Division Series on Friday. The Rangers now lead the series, two games to none.
The Rangers led Friday's game, 2-1, headed into the second, when Odor led off with a walk and Chris Gimenez followed with a high chopper over the mound. Stroman backpedaled to field it, but shortstop Troy Tulowitzki and third baseman Josh Donaldson charged after it as well.
TORONTO -- The Rangers raced out to an early lead in Game 2 of their American League Division Series on Friday with help from Blue Jays miscues. But a heads-up play from Chris Colabello, and aggressive baserunning from Texas, kept Toronto from a massive hole in the game and the best-of-five set.
Three consecutive hits from the top of the Rangers' order opened the scoring and eased the impact from missing injured Adrian Beltre. Two of those hits, however, were nearly outs. Jose Bautista got his glove on Delino DeShields' leadoff double, but lost the ball after colliding with the right-field wall. Shin-Soo Choo drove in DeShields and advanced to third when Prince Fielder's bouncer took a sharp hop and skipped off second baseman Ryan Goins for a single.
TORONTO -- Third baseman Adrian Beltre showed some improvement on Friday, but he was not in the starting lineup for Game 2 of the American League Division Series because of a strained lower back.
"He is continuing to get treatment and he is still sore," Rangers manager Jeff Banister said. "There is some improvement in the sense that I have seen him walking around. To me that is an improvement. How he actually feels, I have allowed him to stay in and get treatment. I haven't asked him how he feels."
TORONTO -- Ed Lucas was having lunch with friends in Scottsdale, Ariz. Joey Gallo was watching the game in Surprise, but he missed the part where Adrian Beltre went down with a strained lower back in Game 1 of the American League Division Series.
"I got a text from Ryan Rua," Gallo said. "He said, 'Beltre is coming out of the game. You better get ready.'"
TORONTO -- The matchups suggest a challenge for Rangers starter Martin Perez against the Blue Jays on Sunday night in Game 3 (7 p.m. CT, FOX Sports 1/Sportsnet) of the best-of-five American League Division Series at Globe Life Park.
Perez is a young left-hander who allowed a .304 batting average and a .777 OPS against right-handed hitters, preparing to face a largely right-handed Jays lineup that pummeled lefties for a .278 average and .818 OPS, the latter leading all Major League clubs.
TORONTO -- The roof is closed at Rogers Centre for Game 2 of the American League Division Series between the Blue Jays and Rangers this afternoon.
Per Major League Baseball policy, the decision on whether the roof at Rogers Centre is open or closed for postseason games is made by the Commissioner's Office. Commissioner Rob Manfred or his representatives meet with the Blue Jays and crew chief umpire Dale Scott prior to each game to discuss the situation.
TORONTO -- Blue Jays starter David Price left a mark on Rangers second baseman Rougned Odor, right around his right shoulder with a cut fastball that never cut. Josh Donaldson left a little bruise, too, around Odor's kneecap, the result of a slide into second base that broke up a double play but also shook up Donaldson with a helmet-to-knee collision.
Neither, however, was bigger than the mark Odor left on Price's next pitch to him, a cutter he lined over the right-field fence in the seventh inning at Rogers Centre. It was a massive insurance homer in the Rangers' 5-3 win over the Blue Jays in Game 1 of their best-of-five American League Division Series.
The Astros earned a 5-2 victory over the Royals in Thursday's American League Division Series opener in much the same way they had earned many of their wins this season -- a blend of power and superb defense.
Houston connected for a pair of homers to pad its Game 1 lead, but it was a defensive gem that may have saved the night for the Astros. Statcast™ tracked each of those home runs, as well as the highlight-reel catch, to provide an in-depth look at each of the game-changing plays.
TORONTO -- With his bullpen fully rested, Rangers manager Jeff Banister was able to go with his favorite pitching blueprint to take Game 1 away from the Blue Jays with a 5-3 victory on Thursday afternoon in the best-of-five American League Division Series.
Rangers starter Yovani Gallardo gave the Rangers five strong innings before Banister, holding a 4-2 lead, turned it over to the bullpen. The only twist in the formula was right-hander Sam Dyson pitching the ninth inning to get the save instead of closer Shawn Tolleson.
The Rangers went into a raucous Rogers Centre and beat the Blue Jays, 5-3, on Thursday in Game 1 of the American League Division Series to take a 1-0 lead in the best-of-five series.
It was the first postseason victory for Texas since Game 5 of the 2011 World Series against the Cardinals. Toronto, on the other hand, will have to wait until at least Game 2 on Friday (12:30 p.m. ET on MLB Network/Sportsnet) for its first postseason win since the 1993 World Series.
After winning Game 1, Texas turns to postseason veteran Hamels in Game 2
By Richard Justice
TORONTO -- Suddenly, the pressure shifts to the Toronto Blue Jays. Not in a small way, either. That's the thing about a short series. Every little thing is magnified. One bad pitch or one poor at-bat can turn the whole thing on its head.
Things are lined up nicely for the Rangers after beating the Blue Jays, 5-3, in Game 1 of the best-of-five American League Division Series on Thursday at Rogers Centre. If there's a Rangers' blueprint for a perfect outcome, this is it.
TORONTO -- Rangers pitcher Cole Hamels has been where Blue Jays pitcher Marcus Stroman is now. That helps Hamels appreciate where he is in his career as both pitchers prepare for Game 2 (Friday, 11:30 a.m. CT, MLB Network/Sportsnet) of the best-of-five American League Division Series, though Hamels is in position to put Texas in total control after its 5-3 win in Game 1 on Thursday.
Like Stroman, Hamels was a second-year Major Leaguer when he got his first taste of postseason baseball, with the 2007 Phillies. He was just 24 years old, the same age Stroman is now, when he won National League Championship Series and World Series MVP honors. Hamels was the accomplished kid in later Phillies rotations that featured Cliff Lee, Roy Halladay and Roy Oswalt.
Star third basemen Donaldson, Beltre exit Game 1 with injuries
By Doug Miller
TORONTO -- They entered this American League Division Series as elite third basemen, prodigious hitters and team leaders. But Adrian Beltre of the Rangers and Josh Donaldson of the Blue Jays each exited Game 1 with injuries -- by the fifth inning of Texas' 5-3 win.
It's well known that teams that have made it this far have to be deep and resilient enough to withstand an unexpected blow or two. Thursday's game just took it to a rare extreme for both sides, and now Toronto and Texas will have to wait and see what to do if they're left with huge holes at the hot corner for Game 2 on Friday (12:30 p.m. ET/11:30 a.m. CT, MLB Network/Sportsnet), and possibly beyond in this best-of-five series.
"We got the best of each other. I got him some and he got me some. I remember thinking that if he ever got to the big leagues, it would be as a pitcher. He was the best pitcher in Mississippi." -- Twins second baseman Brian Dozier, who grew up playing against Mitch Moreland in northeast Mississippi.
"More than anything else, I want the folks back at home to think right of me." -- Elvis Presley, who is also from northeast Mississippi.
TORONTO -- Between Sunday's complete game from Cole Hamels and three days off since the regular season ended, the Rangers are expecting their taxed bullpen to be back to full strength today for Game 1 of the American League Division Series against the Blue Jays at 2:30 p.m. CT on FOX Sports 1.
"Talking to everybody at [Tuesday's] workout, everybody was feeling good," closer Shawn Tolleson said. "A couple of days off and the excitement of postseason have refreshed everybody."
TORONTO -- Two decades of pent-up postseason energy will be unleashed at Rogers Centre this afternoon (2:30 p.m. CT, FS1). Yovani Gallardo can't worry about quieting the crowd. All he can do is try to silence the mighty Blue Jays offense.
He's one of the few pitchers who has done that this year.
TORONTO -- The last time Prince Fielder was in the postseason, he was sitting in the visiting clubhouse at Fenway Park, asked about the pain of the Tigers' 2013 American League Championship loss to the Red Sox on a go-ahead grand slam in Game 6.
"I have kids," Fielder said at the time. "If I'm sitting around pouting about it, how am I going to tell them to keep their chins or keep their heads up when something doesn't go their way? It's over."
Jason Beck is a reporter for MLB.com. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.
No one-hit wonder: Toronto more than just power
Texas tasked with stopping prolific offense that also features patient, speedy, opportunistic hitters
By Doug Miller
TORONTO -- Josh Donaldson was standing still, surrounded by TV cameras and reporters holding voice recorders. There wasn't a whole lot of room to move before his team's Wednesday afternoon workout at Rogers Centre the day before Game 1 of the American League Division Series (3:30 p.m. ET/2:30 CT, FS1/Sportsnet) between Donaldson's Blue Jays and the Texas Rangers.
But when a reporter asked the third baseman and AL MVP candidate if Toronto's prodigious offense would be able to perform in October the way it has while doing ugly, unfair things to much of the rest of the Major Leagues throughout the regular season, he just had to spin his body around and look the guy in the eyes.
Doug Miller is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @DougMillerMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.
Jays, Rangers enjoyed in-season roster makeovers
Common theme for ALDS clubs is transformations that led to postseason push
By Richard Justice
TORONTO -- The Blue Jays of October aren't the Blue Jays of April. They were remade on the fly, strengthened up and down the roster. In that way, they're a lot like the team they'll play in the American League Division Series beginning today (3:30 p.m. ET/2:30 CT, FS1/Sportsnet).
The Rangers were also transformed over the last few months. In the end, a season when they were tested again and again has had a satisfying ending.
TORONTO -- The Blue Jays have set their rotation and roster for the American League Division Series. The Rangers have not.
The Rangers have brought 30 players to Toronto, but don't have to submit a final 25-man roster until 9 a.m. CT on Thursday. They also have decided on Yovani Gallardo and Cole Hamels as their first two starters, but remain undecided for Games 3 and 4 between left-handers Derek Holland and Martin Perez and right-hander Colby Lewis.
The Rangers and Blue Jays meet in the American League Division Series that begins today in Toronto (3:30 p.m. ET on FS1 and Sportsnet). As we prepare for the series, here's a look at some of the top GIFs from each team's season, courtesy of @MLBGIFs.