When the Texas Rangers are down by three runs late in the deciding game of the 2012 World Series, I will point to the game they played against the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim on Aug. 1, 2012, and say, “Where there’s a will, there’s a way.”
Here’s what happened:
Like everyone other casual and diehard fan, I had given up. Too many squandered opportunities, too many Josh Hamilton strikeouts, too few David Murphy at-bats.
But in the bottom of the 8th, David Murphy singled in Adrian Beltre to make the score 7-6. Then, in the bottom of the 9th with one out, Ian Kinsler HIT A HOME RUN TO TIE THE GAME!
Next up, Elvis Andrus doubled. The winning run was on second with one out!!
Up comes Josh Hamilton; pops up to short, does Josh Hamilton.
Beltre up next; pops up to third does Beltre.
In comes the Rangers’ ace, Joe Nathan. Batting eighth, something called Iannetta works the count to 3-2 … and then hits a massive, 400-foot home run to left field. Rangers down, 8-7.
Romaine flies out; Mike Trout, the next incarnation of Babe Ruth, strikes out; Torii Hunter is hit by a pitch.
Up next, with two outs: Albert Pujols. He proceeds to do what Albert Pujols does to Rangers pitchers: hit a towering home run to left centerfield. Angels up, 10-7. Next batter grounds out, but who cares, the Rangers are done, right?
Up first is Nelson Cruz. He hits a stupendous, 470-foot shot to left center. Rangers down, 10-8. There is hope in Mudville!
Then Michael Young reaches on an error, Murphy (of course) walks and Mike Napoli singles. Craig Gentry comes in to run for Napoli.
Mitch Moreland singles, scoring Young. Rangers down, 10-9, with Murphy on third and Gentry on second.
Kinsler is poised to be the hero again … and quietly pops out.
Up comes Elvis Andrus. Up on the count 3-0, he takes a questionable strike on the inside corner, then another right down the middle.
With the count 3-2, he looks more focused than I’ve ever seen him.
And he kills the Angels softly with his song by slapping a double over third base, scoring Murphy and Gentry.
Rangers win, 11-10. It was about as awesome a comeback as you’ll ever see.