Texas Rangers win first franchise World Series, Corey Seager earns World Series MVP
As if they were true Rangers on patrol, vexed about outlaws and looking to take their anger out, the Texas Rangers stomped on the desert snakes and squashed them into the ground, destroying the Arizona Diamondbacks and taking home their first World Series trophy.
Texas defeated Arizona in five games, asserting their dominance over the DBacks. Corey Seager led the pack for the Rangers, winning his second World Series MVP award in the process. Seager smacked homers in three of the World Series games and drove in six runners.
The series began with a classic in Arlington, Texas, with the Rangers defeating the DBacks 6-5 in an extra-inning affair. Texas and Arizona exchanged blows throughout the game, with Adolis Garcia ending the game on a walk-off home run in the 11th inning.
The second game was all Arizona, with the DBacks trouncing the Rangers 9-1. Merrill Kelly threw seven innings of one-run ball en route to the DBacks evening up the series with Texas. Tommy Pham also delivered a stellar performance in game two, slapping four hits in four at-bats.
That blowout loss was all the Rangers needed to lock into gear and turn on the engines, as they commanded the series and took victories in the next three games. Backed by an assortment of five pitchers, led by Max Scherzer and Jon Gray, the Rangers held the DBacks to one run in game three.
Seager ensured that the outstanding pitching effort would lead to victory, crushing a two-run home run and propelling Texas to a 3-1 win.
Game four of the series was when dreams began to unravel for the DBacks, playing sloppy baseball and dropping the game 11-7 to fall to a 1-3 record in the series.
After using Zac Gallen, Kelly and Brandon Pfaadt in the previous three games, Arizona called upon the bullpen for game four and it backfired. After 1.1 innings of one-run baseball from Joe Mantiply to begin the game, Miguel Castro was called upon to hold it down, and he did not answer. Castro allowed three earned runs and only recorded one out in his brief stint on the mound. Chaos ensued from then on out, leading the DBacks to allow 11 total runs with only six being earned.
Arizona crept back into contention in the late innings, plating four runs in the eighth inning and two runs in the ninth, but were ultimately unable to overcome the deficit.
Heading into an elimination game, the DBacks marched their ace, Zac Gallen, on the hill and the Rangers sent Nathan Eovaldi out as their champion. The Rangers came prepared; the DBacks – minus Zac Gallen – did not.
Arizona, despite possessing scoring opportunities, was unable to muster a run across the board. Nathan Eovaldi shined once again, blanking the Rangers through six innings. Gallen matched Eovaldi’s prowess, carrying a no-hit bid into the seventh inning, but his effort was in vain as the DBack bats were silent.
Marcus Semien and Seager played their roles to perfection, going a combined four for nine in the game. Semien capped off the night for Texas with a two-run homer to put the Rangers up 5-0 in the ninth inning.
The Rangers completed a remarkable turnaround in the 2023 season after losing 94 games in 2022. The turnaround, sparked by the $500 million investment in Semien and Seager, was conducted by Rangers’ general manager Chris Young, who took over in 2020. Since Young was hired, the Rangers have acquired Semien, Seager, Max Scherzer, Jon Gray and plenty of other impact players for this championship team.
The Rangers’ core will lead Texas to be contenders for years to come, as they are sure to make more history if the group sticks together and continues their dominance.