On this date in Texas Rangers history, the Rangers opened the 2003 season with a 6-3 win over the Los Angeles Angels in primetime.
The game was on March 30, 2003 and, it qualified as the earliest season-opener for the Rangers to that point in franchise history. The Rangers were coming off three straight losing seasons, starting in 2000, and it marked the debut of Buck Showalter as Rangers manager.
Not much changed for Texas that season. The Rangers went 71-91, finishing fourth in the American League West. That win on March 30 would put the Rangers in first place in the division, and it would end up being the only day they were in first place. At one point, the Rangers were 26 games back in the division and ended the season 25 games back.
But, on this day, the Rangers looked good against the defending World Series champion Angels.
Ismael Valdéz drew the opening-day start for the Rangers, as he gave up three runs and seven hits, along with a walk. Ugueth Urbina earned his first of 26 saves for the Rangers on the season. John Lackey took the loss for the Angels, giving up five runs in five innings.
Juan González had the big game at the plate for the Rangers, finishing with three hits and driving in two runs. Hank Blalock had two hits for the Rangers, as did Carl Everett. Michael Young had one hit, but it was a big one, as he homered to drive in three runs off Lackey in the fourth inning.
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