Jump in a time machine and watch new Rangers starter Mike Minor's five best career starts
After missing all of 2015 and '16 with shoulder injuries, Mike Minor returned with a breakout season in the bullpen for the Royals. The left-hander posted a 2.55 ERA and set a career-high with 10 strikeouts per nine innings. That led to the Rangers reportedly signing Minor to a multi-year deal. That's not surprising. However, what is surprising is that Texas will look to use Minor in the rotation for the first time since 2014.
Though unexpected, if the Rangers can roll back the years, they'll have quite the boost to their rotation -- especially if he can recapture his 2013 form that saw Minor post a 3.21 ERA while topping 200 innings for the first time in his career. Let's get our hopes up by checking out the highlights from five of Minor's best starts of his career.
5. August 10, 2010 vs. Cubs: 6 IP, 7 H, 3 R, 1 BB, 12 K
Though not the best appearance of his career, Minor's 12-K game did set a Braves rookie record for most strikeouts in a game, and that's worth celebrating. Even more impressively, he did it by almost entirely living on the outside corner.
4. 9/5/12 vs. Rockies: 7 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 4 BB, 7 K
Minor's command wasn't his sharpest, but he also took a no-hitter into the seventh before Jordan Pacheco laced a single to break it up.
3. 7/28/12 vs. Phillies: 8 IP, 4 H, 1 R, 0 BB, 9 K
Hunter Pence was once on the Phillies for almost a full season, and in this game, and Minor fanned him twice.
2. July 31, 2013 vs. Rockies: 7 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 6 K
Minor doesn't have a blazing fastball, but he can still get batters to whiff. Just take a look at these three Rockies hitters, including guys that know how to punish fastballs like Carlos Gonzalez and the powerfully goateed Todd Helton:
1. May 25, 2013, Vs. Mets: 7 1/3 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 2 BB, 10 K
Minor had everything going in this game. Just look at how he buckled Lucas Duda's knees with the floating curve:
Of course, it wasn't just the curve that he had going. Minor also blasted a home run that forced Freddie Freeman to put his goggles on in an '80s movie-style double-take: