The first inning of Game 2 almost went just as badly for the Rangers.
Texas starter Derek Holland got off to a good start, retiring leadoff man Desmond Jennings on a pop-up. But B.J. Upton lined a double into the left-field corner. That brought up Evan Longoria, who eventually drew a walk on a full-count curveball. In the broadcast booth, Buck Martinez praised the decision to "not give in" to Longoria with a fastball.
Well, that's great. Except you've still put a guy on base who might eventually score.
Which Longoria might well have done. Holland retired Ben Zobrist on a fly to shallow right field, but Johnny Damon followed with a grounder up the middle that Elvis Andrus snared, but could do nothing with. And with the bases loaded, Game 1 co-hero Kelly Shoppach drew a walk to force in a run.
After a visit from pitching coach Mike Maddux, though, Holland got Sean Rodriguez to ground into an inning-ending fielder's choice, and disaster averted. Holland and catcher Mike Napoli seemed to be on different pages through much of the inning, and Holland threw 29 pitches.
Fortunately for the Rangers, there's no such thing as momentum in baseball.
Rays 1, Rangers 0