TEXAS RANGERS IN THE POSTSEASON
The Texas Rangers' history can be traced back to the team's days as the Washington Senators, the second incarnation of the Washington D.C. franchise which replaced another by the same name which would leave town and become the Minnesota Twins in 1961. While the original Senators were multiple World Series champions in the 1920s, this new brand of Senators baseball did not live up to the area's lofty standards. The Senators hapless play on the field lead to fans coining the term, "Washington first in war, first in peace, last in the American League. After a decade that didn't bring a single playoff appearance, the Senators packed their bags and moved to Arlington, Texas, in 1972 where they would become the Rangers.
Unfortunately for the Ranger faithful, the squad seemed to carry much of the bad luck of their previous team and would be a middling team throughout the majority of the 1970s and '80s. Although the team boasted Hall of Fame talents like Bert Blyleven, Ferguson Jenkins and Gaylord Perry, the Rangers couldn't get over the hump in an extremely talented American League.
It wasn't until the mid-'90s that the Rangers would net its first crack at the postseason. After opening Rangers Ballpark in Arlington in 1994, the team would win its first division championship, but the strike-shortened season dashed their hopes of playing in the postseason. Over the latter course of the 1990s, the Rangers would run into the Yankees juggernaut, losing in the American League Divisional Series in 1996, 1998 and 1999.
In 2010, it all came together for the Rangers as they went on an unprecedented run through their schedule to capture a division championship. Lead by the steady arm of pitcher Cliff Lee and the timely bat of Josh Hamilton, the Rangers would defeat their old Yankee nemesis in the American League Championship Series and face off against the San Francisco Giants in the World Series. Unfortunately, the Rangers would only manage one win in the series but did manage to battle back for another chance at a title in 2011. Yet again, the Rangers were stifled by the St. Louis Cardinals, who won the series in heartbreaking fashion in a Game 7 victory. Although the Rangers have come tantalizingly close to their first championship, the team has made great strides in building a contending roster and should be in the postseason conversation for the foreseeable future.
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