Rangers need to stay the course – there’s no time to panic

Members of the Texas Rangers stand in the dugout in the ninth inning in Game 1 of Major League Baseball's World Series against the San Francisco Giants in San Francisco, October 27, 2010. The Giants beat the Rangers 11-7. REUTERS/Mike Blake (UNITED STATES - Tags: SPORT BASEBALL)

Was it surprising that Cliff Lee got rocked in Game 1 of the World Series? Surprising doesn’t even begin to cover it. Shocking would be a start, but even then the word would be selling the situation short.

But nothing changes here. The game plan remains the same.

Teams that don’t have home field advantage know that they have to split the first two games on the road, then take two-of-three at home before splitting again on the road in order to come out victorious. That’s the same recipe the Giants used against the Phillies in the NLCS and it seemed to work out well for them.

C.J. Wilson needs to best Matt Cain in Game 2 Thursday night. That’s no small feat considering that Cain hasn’t allowed a run in two postseason starts, but the Rangers’ offense has a way of making even the best pitchers look mortal (just ask Tim Lincecum, who lasted only 5.2 innings and gave up four runs in Game 1).

Texas has already shown its mettle twice this postseason. After beating the Rays twice on the road in the ALDS, they dropped two games at home and then had to play at Tampa in Game 5. Thanks to Lee, they won and they moved on to face the Yankees, who came from behind to shock the Rangers in Game 1 in what could have been a backbreaker.

But it wasn’t. The Rangers took Game 2 to even the series and then went on to beat the Bombers in six games. They’ve shown their resiliency before and if they can do it again, they’ll essentially have home field advantage in what would turn into a five game series. That’s why splitting on the road in the first two games is vital.

And that’s what they’ll need to do tonight. For once, the Rangers need to let Lee off the hook.

Follow the Scores Report editors on Twitter @clevelandteams and @bullzeyedotcom.

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