'They pay for the show': Adolis goes all out amid Houston's boos

April 13th, 2024

HOUSTON -- Boos rained down upon all night long at Minute Maid Park. From lineup introductions, to his first plate appearance and each subsequent one afterward and again after two separate stolen bases, it was clear that García was not a fan favorite down south.

But García is no stranger to boos in Houston. And like he’s done many times before, he quieted them fairly quickly.

The Rangers’ superstar outfielder, who went 2-for-3 with two walks and two RBIs, was just one of many factors that led the club to a big 12-8 victory over the Astros on Friday night in front of 39,842 jeering fans.

“I tried to ignore the crowd,” García said. “I just focus on having good at-bats. But that makes me feel good. There's a lot of people against me, and they pay for the show.”

If they paid for a show, he definitely gives it to them.

“When you're getting booed, you're doing something right,” added catcher Jonah Heim, who had a three-run homer of his own. “Adolis has done really well in this building specifically, but also against the Astros. He loves RBIs, so hopefully he keeps doing that.”

García is known for his high-flying homers and dramatic bat flips, so what made Friday’s contribution even more notable was that it didn’t come on the long ball.

Both RBI singles were on hard-hit balls, with exit velocities of 110.9 and 107.8 mph. But they were both sent to the opposite field, as García focused more on moving the runners instead of hitting the ball 500 feet. Additionally, he recorded his first multiwalk game of the year as he continues to improve on balancing his aggressiveness with selectivity.

García also became the first Ranger since Elvis Andrus on Aug. 14, 2019, to reach base safely four or more times, steal two or more bases and notch two or more RBIs.

“Today I was really just taking good pitches and making good swings,” García said. “Trying not to be too big or too aggressive. I've been working on a little bit of everything. I try to be aggressive in some moments, and in some moments I have to just calm down and just [put up] a good at-bat. That's the only thing on my mind right now. … I'm looking for a good pitch for me. I'm not trying to just hit everything.”

Texas entered Friday having lost four of its past five games, including two against Houston at Globe Life Field. During that 1-4 span, the offense slashed .197/.295/.270 with just two home runs, a dramatic change for a typically high-powered lineup. Over the Rangers’ 6-2 start to the year, their .301/.378/.486 slash line featured the highest on-base percentage in MLB and the second-highest batting average, slugging percentage and OPS (.864), behind Atlanta.

“Baseball's weird that way,” Heim said. “One day you’ll wake up and it feels like you're swinging a golf club. The next day, the bat feels pretty good in your hand. Tonight we just put together good team at-bats. We had a good game plan and didn’t swing at balls. I think that's the biggest thing. When we're not chasing and we're making them throw strikes in the zone, we’re pretty dangerous.”

Eight of the nine Texas starters logged at least one hit, leading to a six-run third inning and four-run sixth inning.

The 12 runs are the most the Rangers have scored this season.

“The line just kept moving tonight,” manager Bruce Bochy said. “I wish I could’ve had a couple of those yesterday, but we need it all tonight, because they came back, they battled back and made it a ballgame. You have to love the at-bats, the walks and the big hits. The guys had really good focus tonight, just all around quality at-bat after quality at-bat. I just love the way they they went up there with that good approach all night.”