Nelson Cruz Is One Of Just Three Active Players Who Helped Texas Score a Score and a Half
All-Star outfielder Nick Markakis was on the fun end of the record-setting rout this time, even though he did not physically participate in the game. He had to find it quite enjoyable to watch his Atlanta Braves teammates score 29 runs in the September 9 game against the Miami Marlins, an output of offense that set a new National League record.
While the runs were mounting, however, Markakis probably felt sorry for the guys in the other dugout, as he recalled suffering a similar embarrassment thirteen years ago. His Baltimore Orioles were on the short end of an even more lopsided game, when the Texas Rangers racked up thirty runs to establish the current overall record for most by one team in a game.
Texas was aided in its bid to keep the record by what is best called the “away from home field advantage,” which allowed their hitters to bat in the ninth inning. Atlanta on the other hand was the home team last Wednesday, so they had tallied all of their runs in just eight opportunities to hit.
Actually the Rangers scored in just four of the frames, all which came after they were shut out for the first three against Baltimore right hander Daniel Cabrera. He encountered his first trouble after the first batter reached, but after inducing a pop out from Nelson Cruz it appeared the shut out might stay in tact.
Back to back singles brought in Texas's first two runs, followed by a homer from Ramon Vazquez that put the Rangers ahead. Cabrera recovered to work a perfect fifth inning, but catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia greeted him with a home run to start the sixth.
The Baltimore bullpen then took over, or should I say, went under. Four of the first five hitters reached against reliever Brian Burres, the last of which was a grand slam by outfielder Marlon Byrd. Five straight singles followed that blast, forcing manager Sam Perlozzo to bring in left hander Rob Bell.
All-Star second baseman Ian Kinsler greeted Bell with a two-run single before Michael Young's fly ball mercifully ended the inning, but more offense was to come a few innings later. David Murphy singled off of Bell to start the eighth and, after home runs by Saltalamacchia and Travis Metcalf, Murphy singled again in the same inning.
It was 24-3 heading to the ninth, yet the Rangers were not quite finished. Kinsler walked to lead it off, followed sveral batters later by another RBI hit from Murphy. By the time Kinsler got up again and flied to center for the third out, Texas had crossed the plate exactly thirty times.
As if that sum were not enough, the two teams then had to turn around and do it all over again. You see, the 30-3 rout had been the first game of a scheduled double header, so a half hour later Texas struck again.
They put up a three spot in the third and ended up winning 9-7, completing a sweep and wrapping up a crazy eighteen innings of baseball. The second game, in spite of the more normal run count, might have been crazier than the opener.
For evidence of that possibility all you need to do is look at the time the game took, which was three hours and 31 minutes. The first game, the one with a total of 33 runs scored, had taken just three hour and 21 minutes.