As far as losses go, this one goes down as one of the more frustrating ones.
Robbie Ross was... solid? Then again, he did hit 3 batters, which might as well be walks, except without actually making the hitter work.
When Ross left the game and Frasor provided an inning of scoreless relief, apparently Ron Washington felt that his gut said to go with Neal Cotts in the bottom of the 8th inning. Despite the fact that Cotts has struggled... well all season so far, Wash gave him the longest leash possible, giving Cotts time to blow a 3-2 lead and give up three runs before finally summoning Alexi Ogando to somehow "salvage" a game in which the Rangers were now down 5-3.
Ogando proceeded to be wild, as he is from time to time (aka pretty much always), and the Rangers headed to the 9th down 6-3.
Then Fernando Rodney came into the game.
I'm sorry, but anyone who wears their baseball hat as such just deserves what they get.
And Rodney almost got it. He ended up with the bases loaded in a 6-5 game in which he had walked home two runs. With Adrian Beltre coming up, you had to figure he'd be putting the ball in the air.
Except he chased a pitch outside, lined to Justin Smoak, and Elvis Andrus was doubled off. Game over.
As much as I want to be upset with Beltre for swinging at that pitch -- and wearing some sort of ridiculous glasses I've never seen him wear before -- I can't help but blame Ron Washington.
You've got a struggling reliever in Neal Cotts in a high-leverage situation. The very moment he begins to struggle, you have to have someone warming, not once the lead is blown. This is the very reason I've long been a detractor to the "leadership" advantage he supposedly gives this club. For every advantage that may give, Wash gives it up by continuing to "trust in his guys" as opposed to going with what the numbers actually say.
This is why the Tampa Bay Rays have been successful over the last 6-7 years; and yet, for all of the talent on the roster, it continualy amazes me that Ron Washington continues to "go with the gut" as opposed to actually being progressive and winning the game.
I'm going to clarify. From having Esteban German hit in the World Series, riding Michael Young into the ground in 2012, to believing that somehow Neal Cotts would suddenly work magic tonight, it's all on Ron Washington.
He very well may be a fantastic coach, but we're inching closer and closer to the territory in which we can undoubtedly say he is ill-equiped to be the manager of a contending Major League Baseball team.