Archive for Thursday, August 16, 2007

Wilson gets shaky save; Royals fall

August 16, 2007


— C.J. Wilson wants to be the Texas Rangers' closer in 2008, and he took another step in his tryout to nail down the job.

Wilson survived a shaky ninth inning to earn another save, Michael Young hit a two-run double, and Ian Kinsler homered as the Rangers held on to beat the Kansas City Royals, 4-3, on Wednesday night.

The Royals rallied for two runs in the ninth as Wilson had his scoreless streak of 162â3 innings snapped.

Pinch-hitter Emil Brown reached on an error leading off, and Wilson walked Esteban German before John Buck hit an RBI double to center field on a bad hop that nearly hit Young in the head at shortstop. Wilson was sure Young would start a double play on the grounder and was stunned when the ball bounced into the outfield for two bases.

Joey Gathright followed with an infield single that made it 4-3.

But with runners on the corners, Tony Pena Jr. hit into a game-ending 5-4-3 double play for Wilson's sixth save in seven chances.

"There's so many lessons to learn," Wilson said. "I made some bad pitches, I made some good pitches. I got some bad breaks, got some good breaks. It was a good lesson for me. I can't let my guard down. It's a good feeling. You're going to get into some jams. You have to get out them if you want to be a closer."

Wilson has earned saves in the Rangers' last three games, stamina that has impressed manager Ron Washington.

"He's handled it very well," Washington said. "He's been out there three games in a row. He was challenged mentally and physically, and he stood up to the challenge."

Mike Wood (3-1) allowed two hits in one scoreless inning to earn the win.


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