ARLINGTON, Texas — There has been a lot of local attention to get Isiah Kiner-Falefa to the MLB All-Star Game next month — and for good reason. However, if the Texas Rangers only get one player voted in, it will likely be Adolis García.
The 28-year-old rookie helped the Rangers defeat the Oakland A's by a score of 5-3 on Wednesday night with two home runs, bringing his season total to 20. García now leads American League outfielders in home runs, RBI, and slugging percentage, building up his resumé for the Midsummer Classic in Colorado.
"I've been working hard and been focused on trying to do better and help the team win," García said. "I'm not really focused on going to the All-Star Game right now."
After García hit his 16th homer of the season on May 26, it took him 17 games for him to get to No. 17. During that stretch, García had a modest .242/.265/.273/.537 slash line. Maybe pitchers adjusted to him. Maybe it was just a slump. And for a 28-year-old rookie, any signs of regression won't go unnoticed.
But García seems to be clicking again, clubbing four homers in the past six games. It's reminded everyone not only how talented and physically gifted he is, but how hard he works to maintain production.
"It's not surprising," said Rangers manager Chris Woodward. "You see the talent that he has. But the conversations and the things he talks about, the calmness with which he walks around ... when you have that kind of power to all fields, it just puts your mind at ease. You don't have to cheat to get to a fastball. It's been fun to watch."
One Ranger who also cast aside some recent demons was starter Mike Foltynewicz, who pitched six strong innings before allowing a run. He gave up a homer to Sean Murphy to lead off the seventh, then allowed a double by Elvis Andrus, but when Chris Woodward came to take the ball from him, he gave Foltynewicz a few pats on the chest after one of his better starts of the season.
"He did his job," Woodward said. "He pitched his butt off today. He gave us a chance to win. He did everything he could. I wanted him to know the only reason I was getting him out of there is I wanted to make sure he had a really good outing."
Despite the strong outing, Woodward said Foltynewicz apologized to the team for letting the A's back in the game. Andrus ended up scoring in the seventh inning, then Matt Chapman gave Oakland the lead with an RBI single.
But then we saw the Rangers fight back once again. They fell short on Tuesday after digging themselves into a 9-0 hole, but that same mentality bled over into Wednesday's game. When the Rangers came to hit in the bottom half of the seventh, it took them only three pitches to regain the lead.
Nate Lowe rocketed the first pitch of the inning into the Rangers bullpen to tie the game. Then on the next pitch, Eli White doubled to left-center. Brock Holt followed that up with a flare into shallow left field that scored White and gave Texas a lead they would never surrender.
"It was good to see our guys have an approach against a guy who throws the ball over the plate and be ready to hit," Woodward said. "That's something we've been talking about a lot with certain pitchers that we need to attack. It was cool to see our guys do that today."
- Rangers catcher Jonah Heim, who was acquired from Oakland in the Elvis Andrus trade, drove in the first run of the ballgame with an RBI double in the fifth inning.
- Joely Rodríguez recorded his first career save, pitching a scoreless ninth inning. Closer Ian Kennedy was unavailable (illness).
- Wednesday was García's third multi-homer game of the season. His 20 homers are tied for fourth in Rangers history for single-season home runs by a rookie. (30-Pete Incaviglia in 1986, 26-Mark Teixeira in 2003, 22-Dave Hostetler in 1982, 20-Nomar Mazara in 2016).
More on SI's Inside The Rangers:
- Rangers Call Up Joe Barlow, DFA Brett de Geus
- Rangers Routed By A's, Romo Drops Pants During Foreign Substance Check
- 'I Want To Win': Isiah Kiner-Falefa Discusses Rangers' Potential Pursuit Of Free Agent Shortstops
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