The 2023 World Series is tied through two games after the Texas Rangers suffered a 9-1 loss to the Arizona Diamondbacks in Game 2 at Globe Life Field on Saturday night.
Unlike many of the Rangers’ games this postseason, this game was a pitchers’ duel in the early innings as Texas starter Jordan Montgomery and Arizona starter Merrill Kelly overpowered the opposing lineups.
Montgomery pitched into the seventh inning but did not record a strikeout and was outdueled by Kelly, who held Texas without a hit for three-and-two-thirds innings. The Texas bullpen tried to keep the Rangers in the game but gave up its first runs of the series.
Arizona catcher Gabriel Moreno opened the scoring with a home run off Montgomery in the top of the fourth inning, and the Diamondbacks added another run to take a 2-0 lead later in the inning.
Texas outfielder Evan Carter came up with the Rangers’ first hit of the ballgame with a single in the fourth, extending his on-base streak. However, the Rangers did not get on the scoreboard until the fifth, when Mitch Garver sent a 1-1 pitch from Kelly over the left field wall.
Kelly rebounded by striking out the side in the sixth and got more run support in the seventh as Arizona developed a 4-1 lead with a couple of two-out hits off Andrew Heaney and Dane Dunning. The Diamondbacks added three more runs in the eighth and two more in the ninth to run away with a 9-1 victory and tie the series as it moves to Phoenix for the next three games.
Kelly finished the game with nine strikeouts through seven innings and allowed just three hits.
WHAT TO KNOW
— The Diamondbacks beat the Rangers in Game 2 of the World Series to tie the series 1-1 as it heads to Phoenix for the next three games. The team that wins three more games first will win the championship.
— This is the first time the Rangers have been tied through two games of a series this postseason. They swept the Tampa Bay Rays and Baltimore Orioles in the first two rounds and led the Houston Astros 2-0 in the American League Championship Series.
— Montgomery is the first starting pitcher to pitch at least six innings in a World Series start without striking out a batter since Atlanta’s Greg Maddux in 1996.
— Carter has reached base safely in 14 consecutive games.
BY THE NUMBERS
— The Rangers scored fewer than two runs for the first time this postseason and managed just four hits.
— The Texas bullpen went eight innings in the series without allowing a run before Ketel Marte’s RBI single in the eighth. The hit gave Marte an 18-game postseason hitting streak, setting the MLB record for the longest to begin a career.
— Arizona was 6-for-14 with runners in scoring position, while Texas was 0-for-1 and did not have an at-bat with a runner in scoring position until the bottom of the ninth inning.
— The Rangers are 2-4 at home during the playoffs and 8-0 on the road.
— Texas and Arizona have a travel day on Sunday and will play Game 3 of the World Series at 7:03 p.m. CT on Monday in Phoenix.