The Texas Rangers were dealt a devastating blow, then did what they seem to do every time adversity strikes this season — they dominated in the face of it.
Moments after learning that Max Scherzer and Adolis Garcia would be forced off their World Series roster because of injury, the Rangers put together arguably their most complete performance of this postseason, storming past the Arizona Diamondbacks with an 11-7 drubbing in Game 4 on Tuesday night.
The Rangers, with a 3-1 lead in this best-of-seven series, are now one victory away from solidifying the first championship in their 62-year franchise history.
They got there within the first three innings, scoring 10 of their runs before recording their ninth out and quieting a sold-out Chase Field crowd.
Marcus Semien contributed a two-run triple in the second and a three-run homer in the third. Corey Seager unleashed a 431-foot home run off the facing of a wall beyond the right-center-field fence. And Travis Jankowski — the speedy, glove-first outfielder who replaced Garcia in right field — contributed a two-run double.
Andrew Heaney cruised in the midst of the Rangers’ onslaught, contributing five innings of one-run ball on 80 pitches, pitching much deeper into the game than anybody anticipated. The Rangers — like the Diamondbacks — were planning to stage some semblance of a bullpen game. Instead, Heaney lasted long enough to capture the first postseason win of his 10-year career.
The D-backs’ best opportunity came in the fourth, an inning that started with two runners in scoring position and ended with only one run.
By the time they scored again — in a four-run eighth inning highlighted by Lourdes Gurriel Jr.’s three-run homer — it was far too late.
The Rangers, who saw Scherzer suffer back spasms while pitching early in Game 3 and Garcia suffer an oblique strain later that same night, have now obtained 10 consecutive road games this postseason.
One more, and they’ll be World Series champions.