The Texas Rangers are right in the thick of the American League wild-card muck, currently 2.5 games back of the second spot, but their playoff hopes took a bit of a hit Sunday.
Not only did the Rangers lose 3-2 to the lowly White Sox, they also might have lost two key players to injury.
In the eighth-inning of Sunday’s loss, pitcher Matt Bush and third baseman Joey Gallo chased the same pop-up and collided violently (as Bush made the catch), leading to both players exiting with injuries.
Gallo had a bloody nose and a swollen upper lip, Bush had a bruised knee, and—more importantly—both are now in the league’s concussion protocol. Neither will travel with the team to Anaheim for a crucial series against the Angels.
Here’s the collision:
Here's the collision that knocked Joey Gallo and Matt Bush out of today's game vs. the White Sox. Ouch. pic.twitter.com/oQxzyhRmHO
— FOX 4 Sports (@KDFWsports) August 20, 2017
Bush and Gallo are key players on a Rangers team that lacks stars but thrives off its balance. Gallo might be the most all-or-nothing player in baseball history (he has 35 home runs and only 20 singles, with 152 strikeouts), but he’s second on the team in OPS. Bush is one of the team’s better relievers, with a 3.05 ERA and more than a K per inning.
Though neither Gallo nor Bush is absolutely essential to Texas’ success, every games matters, and losing two contributors for even a week would hurt the Rangers’ standing in the wild-card race.
Remember kids, always make sure to call, “I got it.”