The Tampa Bay Rays won 99 games in the regular season.
The Texas Rangers?
The nine-game gap between the two squads didn’t prevent the Rangers from sweeping the Rays at home, in Tropicana Field, during the American League Wild Card round.
It was a somewhat shocking outcome for the Rays, but the Rangers have shown throughout the year that they are no slouch.
Much of their success as a team stems from their incredible offense.
Corey Seager was brilliant and would have been an MVP candidate if it wasn’t for Shohei Ohtani’s dominant performance, Marcus Semien was as good as expected, Adolis Garcia was an RBI machine, and rookies such as Josh Jung and Evan Carter made sure to leave their mark, too.
The last two were very important in the sweep against the Rays.
“This rookie duo put on a show to help secure the Wild Card Series sweep: Josh Jung: 3-for-8, 3B, 2 2B, 2 RBI; Evan Carter: 3-for-4, HR, 2 2B, 2 RBI, 3 BB,” MLB Network tweeted.
This rookie duo put on a show to help secure the Wild Card Series sweep 🧹
— MLB Network (@MLBNetwork) October 5, 2023
Jung had three hits, but all of them went for extra-bases.
It isn’t surprising, since he had 25 doubles and 23 home runs in just 122 games this year.
Carter put up a similar slugging display: all three hits he had against Tampa went more than one base.
The infielder had two doubles and a home run, plus three walks.
He played fewer games than Jung in the regular season, but posted an incredible 1.058 OPS in 23 contests.
If the Baltimore Orioles want to make it to the Championship Series, their pitching staff will need to be at its best.NEXT: Rangers Release Must-See Playoff Hype Video