Austin Bibens-Dirkx and Isiah Kiner-Falefa gave the Rangers a truly unique lineup on Thursday
On Thursday night, the Rangers played not only a baseball game, but also the name game. Once they re-signed starting pitcher Austin Bibens-Dirkx for the 2018 season, they put themselves on a course for a potentially unusual lineup.
That's because infield prospect Isiah Kiner-Falefa was getting closer to the Majors, and he debuted with the club on April 10. Meanwhile, Bibens-Dirkx began the year with Triple-A Round Rock, but the Rangers promoted him on Thursday to make the start against the Royals.
All this buildup led to an onomastic first:
By the way with Bibens-Dirkx and Kiner-Falefa, the Rangers become the first team in Major League history to have 2 players with hyphenated last names in the same starting lineup.- John Blake (@RangerBlake) May 24, 2018
Bibens-Dirkx and Kiner-Falefa also found themselves in the same lineup once before, when they were back in Round Rock on April 8. As legendary broadcaster Mel Allen would say, "How about that?"
Kiner-Falefa lent Bibens-Dirkx a hand during the game, too, as he made a smooth, barehanded pick to get an out on a grounder to third:
Gloves are overrated. pic.twitter.com/D6DWRuFa0Q- Texas Rangers (@Rangers) May 25, 2018
To add the cherry on top, Thursday's Rangers lineup also featured Shin-Soo Choo. Too bad Joseph Gordon-Levitt couldn't throw out the first pitch.