The Texas Strangers

Another in a long line of shining, yet ultimately hollow moments.

Another American League All-Star Game victory. Another significant Rangers contribution to the win.

But in the big photo, does it really matter?

Texas shortstop Michael Young provided the game-winning sacrifice fly in the 15th inning of last night’s 4-3 win, giving the franchise yet another recent All-Star highlight.

Surely you remember:

’03 – Hank Blalock hits dramatic two-run homer off impeccable closer Eric Gagne in the 8th. ’04 – Alfonso Soriano wins MVP after smacking homer off Roger Clemens in Houston ’06 – Michael Young wins MVP for his game-winning triple in 9th in Pittsburgh. ’08 – Josh Hamilton hits record 28 homers in scintillating Derby at Yankee Stadium. ’08 – Young’s sac fly wins memorable marathon in 15th inning.

Add it all up and it means, let’s see, carry the two, multiply that by karma and – um, nothing. That’s right, nothing.

For all their mid-season success and glory, the Rangers remain an afterthought franchise with exactly one playoff game win in 37 years of baseball. Their utter irrelevance was on display again last night when Ian Kinsler entered the game with his 25-game hitting streak and league-leading batting average.

Fox analyst Tim McCarver called him “Kints-sler.”

Guess Dirk “No-win-ski” has company. -- Richie Whitt

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