Hot Stove #237 – Texas Rangers Win Their First World Series (And Get a Rolling Stones Record)



On November 1, 2015, the Kansas City Royals won the World Series in Game 5. The winning pitcher was Chris Young.

On November 1, 2023, the Texas Rangers won the World Series in Game 5. The winning general manager was Chris Young.

I was hoping for a Rangers victory because the Rangers were one of the six teams that had never won a World Series. Below, as shown on TV during Game 5:


The Rangers franchise began as the expansion Washington Senators in 1961 and relocated to Texas in 1972. Next up would be Milwaukee and San Diego, expansion teams founded in 1969, the same year as the Kansas City Royals (who have won two World Series).

In other Texas Rangers news, the team is part of a limited vinyl edition of Hackney Diamonds, the new Rolling Stones album released on October 20.

Stones x Texas Rangers Vinyl

There will be more about the Stones in Lonnie’s Jukebox, but first, the games of the 2023 World Series.

Game 1 – Texas over Arizona (5-4): The 2023 World Series started with a classic Game 1. Texas trailed 5-3 in the bottom of the ninth with one on and one out. Corey Seager (below) hit a two-run clutch homer to tie the score 5-5 and send the game into extra innings.

Rangers' Corey Seager's Historic Home Run Was the Perfect Storm of  Preparation - Sports Illustrated

Adolis Garcia, the MVP of the ALCS, came to bat in the 11th inning. The pitcher was Miguel Castro (fun fact – Garcia defected from Cuba in 2016). Garcia blasted a home run for a Rangers walk-off victory (video here; “and the legend grows”). This was the 22nd RBI for Garcia in this postseason, a new MLB record.

 Screenshot 2023-10-30 at 1.06.01 PM.png

 Roof Trivia: As shown in the box score above, the temperature was 73 at game time, but the Rangers left the sliding roof closed. They would do the same in Game 2.

 Game 1 Trivia: Royals fans might have some déjà vu. In Game 1 of the 2015 World Series, the Royals trailed the Mets 4-3 in the bottom of the 9th. Alex Gordon hit a home run to tie the game, and his celebration rounding first is embedded in the brains of Royals fans. 

Royals' Alex Gordon focusing on strong finish to World Series, not free  agency

The game stretched to the 14th inning, and the Royals won when Eric Hosmer hit a sacrifice fly to score Alcides Escobar. On the first pitch of the game, Escobar had hit an inside-the-park home run. This gave him the distinction of scoring runs on both the first and last pitches of the game.

 Screenshot 2023-10-30 at 1.04.58 PM.png

 Trivia on Trivia: As noted in the box score, Texas general manager Chris Young was the Royals winning pitcher.

 Game 2 – Arizona over Texas (9-1): The Rangers had four hits. Arizona’s Tommy Pham had four hits. The other Diamondbacks added 12 more that turned a close game (2-1 after six innings) into blowout. Final score, 9-1.

Arizona pitcher Merrill Kelly was superb in his seven innings: three hits, one run, nine strikeouts and no walks. Kelly did not reach the majors until 2019 when he was 30 years old. His prior years were in the minors and then four years in Korea. The now-35-year-old has been an ace in the postseason.

Ketel Marte was hitless in his first three at bats, endangering his hitting streak that stood at 17 games. But the Arizona second baseman came through with a 2-run single in the 8th, extending his streak to 18 games, a new MLB record.

Ketel Marte, 18-game hitting streak! Longest streak in Postseason history.
Pictured: Cutout of Ketel Marte celebrating with his arms in the air after stealing a base in World Series Game 1. He wears a red D-backs jersey with black lettering and dirt-covered gray baseball pants.

Game 3 – Texas over Arizona (3-1): The World Series moved to Phoenix for the next three games.

 Max Scherzer started for the Rangers and got into trouble in the second inning. Christian Walker doubled and tried to score on a hit by Tommy Pham. Initially, Walker was being waved home by the third base coach, but the coach switched to a stop sign. Too late. Walker was committed to scoring, apparently not remembering that right fielder Adolis Garcia has a cannon for an arm. It was a beautiful one-hop throw for the out at the plate (video here). Instead of two men on and no outs, it went to one on and one out. The Arizona rally died.

In the third, the Rangers scored three runs after two were out, the big blow being a 2-run homer by Corey Seager. As the ball headed over the fence, Adolis Garcia was in the on-deck circle and did his own bat flip in celebration.

 Corey Seager runs out of the batters box after a home run. In the background, Adolis García drops his bat and throws his arms in the air.

After that, a string of pitchers held off the hitters from both teams until the 8th inning. That’s when Aroldis Chapman took the mound for Texas. He gave up a double that was followed by a single to score a run. Then a strikeout. The rally was snuffed out when a shot by Ketel Marte was snagged by Corey Seager who started a sensational double play (video here). Texas won 3-1

Game 4 – Texas over Arizona (11-7): When Rita and I made our bucket list stop at Chase Field in September, the sliding roof was not open for the game. It had the feel of an airplane hangar with air conditioning (the AC a necessity for summer heat). With the temperatures in the 70s for Games 3, 4 and 5, the roof was open, and the stadium looked so much better. Below, a screen shot from our TV.

 The bad news for Texas in Game 4 was that Adolis Garcia was out for the balance of the World Series with an oblique injury. The good news was that it made no difference. The Rangers scored 10 runs after two were out in the 2nd and 3rd innings. For the third time in the Series, Corey Seager hit a 2-run homer. 

Little went right for the Diamondbacks. Poor pitching (6 earned runs) and fielding (5 unearned runs). Quiet bats for seven innings. They awoke (too late) in the 8th and 9th to bring the final score to 11-7.

Cumulative run totals for Games 1-4: Arizona – 21; Texas – 20. Yet Texas led three games to one. Only six teams have come back to win a World Series after a 3-1 deficit (e.g., our Royals over the Cardinals in 1985).

Rangers spook D-Backs in Game 4 of World Series to take 3-1 series lead –  NBC Bay Area

Streak Trivia #1: Ketel Marte extended his postseason hitting streak to 20 games. Four of those games date back to 2017. His 16 games in 2023 established a new record for a single postseason, breaking the record of 15 set by the Royals Alcides Escobar in 2015.

Streak Trivia #2: The Rangers victory was their tenth in a row on the road, a record postseason streak (which they would extend to 11 in Game 5). Their road record during the regular season was 40-41.

Game 5 – Texas over Arizona (5-0): This game had two parts.

The First Six Innings: Arizona starter Zac Gallen pitched no-hit ball. The only Texas baserunner was on a walk. The Texas starter, Nathan Eovaldi, was constantly in trouble, giving up four hits and five walks. All nine of those Arizona baserunners were left stranded. Going into the 7th inning, score tied 0-0.

 The Last Three Innings: In the top of the 7th, Corey Seager led off and broke up Gallen’s no-hitter with a single. Seager came around to score on a pair of singles and Texas took a 1-0 lead. In the 8th, Texas loaded the bases, but failed to score. In the 9th, the wheels fell off for the Diamondbacks and Texas scored four runs.

In contrast, Arizona was stopped by the Texas relievers who completed the shutout. Final score 5-0 in favor of the World Champions.

Post by MLB Jesus on X.png

Click here for the celebration by the players and here for the fans in Texas.

Texas Rangers win first World Series title with 5-0 victory over Arizona  Diamondbacks in Game 5 - ABC News

The MVP vote was no doubt unanimous. Corey Seager. He also won the award when he was with the Dodgers in 2020, making him the only player to win in both leagues. There are three other multiple winners: Bob Gibson (Cardinals), Sandy Koufax (Dodgers) and Reggie Jackson (Yankees/A’s). 


First Player To Win World Series MVP In Both Leagues
On the left, a cutout of Corey Seager after the 2020 World Series holding the Commissioner’s Trophy and Willie Mays World Series Most Valuable Player Trophy. On the right, Corey Seager holds the 2023 Willie Mays World Series MVP Trophy.

Congratulations to my friends Bob Moxham and Richard Martin who have waited decades for this to happen.

Lonnie’s Jukebox – Rolling Stones/MLB Edition: In last week’s Hot Stove, I made this general comment about the league championship games:

“The early games of the ALCS and NLCS were mostly light on drama, but “Big Friday” (October 20) provided back-to-back thrillers for the national TV audience. That excitement continued as both series went the full seven games.”

 There was another thriller on Big Friday. The Rolling Stones released Hackney Diamonds, their first studio album of new material in 18 years. Their debut album was released 59 years ago (1964).

The Rolling Stones - Hackney Diamonds Lyrics and Tracklist | Genius

The shards of glass on the album cover are a hint about the title. Hackney is an area in East London where they use the phrase “Hackney diamonds” to refer to shards of glass from broken car windows and shop windows as a result of robbery. As part of the promotion for the album, the Stones ran an ad in the Hackney Gazette for a fake glass repair company established in 1962 (the year the band was founded). Three of the band’s songs were incorporated in the copy, and if you call the phone number, the prerecorded message in a Cockney accent is “Hackney Diamonds, specialists in glass repair. Don’t be angry, get it fixed.” As you will see below, “Angry” is the first cut on the album.

The Stones have teamed up with MLB to issue a limited collectors’ vinyl edition of Hackney Diamonds. The records are white (like a baseball), and there is custom art for each of the 30 teams. The band’s logo tongue is designed to look like a baseball.

The Beatles had their famous double White Album. The Stones now have 30 almost-all-white albums on sale at their shopping website. Here is the Royals version:

Stones x Kansas City Royals Vinyl – The Rolling Stones

The Stones and MLB have a long history because many baseball stadiums have been venues for their tours. In 1989, the Steel Wheels Tour played half of its North American dates in MLB stadiums.

This poster shows the artwork for each of the teams, organized by the AL and NL divisions. And someone looked at the season standings. Within each division, the teams are in the order they finished in the 2023 regular season.


For background on the new album, I recommend this interview of Mick Jagger (80), Keith Richards (79) and Ronnie Wood (76) on CBS Sunday Morning (click here; 8 minutes).

The Rolling Stones | Spotify

The album is streaming on Spotify and all cuts can be played at this link on YouTube. Some samples…

“Angry” – The link is to the first promo video for the album. Very cleverly done with actress Sydney Sweeney being driven through Los Angeles in a red Mercedes convertible and members of the band singing to her from billboards.

 “Sweet Sounds of Heaven” – Live with Lady Gaga at Racket NYC.

“Rolling Stone Blues” – The only non-original cut, a cover of Muddy Waters “Rollin’ Stone,” the blues staple that inspired the band’s name. Check out the record spinning in this video. It is made of shards of glass (i.e., Hackney diamonds).

The new album naturally caused me to reminisce. Rita and I have seen the Stones twice in concert in Kansas City. The first was during the American Tour 1981, when the Stones did back-to-back nights at Kemper Arena in December of 1981 (six months after Rita and I were married). My ticket stub.


My primary memory of the night is when Mick Jagger weaved back and forth over the crowd in an aerial bucket lift (as shown on the record cover below).

 Rolling Stones / Still Life In Kansas City 1981 Multiband Remaster / 2CD  With OBI Strip – GiGinJapan

“Hang Fire” at Kemper Arena in 1981. At the beginning of this video, Jagger thanks the opening act, George Thorogood and the Destroyers, and then introduces the members of the Rolling Stones.

“Start Me Up” at Kemper Arena in 1981. For many years, this song was played for the opening kickoffs at Arrowhead.

Our next Stones concert was on October 8, 1989, when Rita and I joined Hollis and Fran Hanover at the Steel Wheels Tour at Arrowhead. My ticket stub.


Vintage 1989 Rolling Stones Steel Wheels Concert Tour Single Stitch T-Shirt  M | eBay

The Steel Wheels album was the last to produce a Top-40 single for the Stones (“Rock and a Hard Place,” debuting on November 4, 1989; a month later, a future Arrowhead performer was born – Taylor Swift).

But 1989 was hardly the end of the Stones. They have produced at least one Top-10 album in every decade, and their memorable live performances and longevity have earned them the title of the world’s greatest rock ‘n’ roll band.

Some of my favorites…

“Time Is on My Side” (1964). As seen on the Ed Sullivan show. This was their first Top-10 hit, and the title still applies for Mick, Keith and Ronnie.

“(I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction” (1965). Their biggest hit single.

“(I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction” by Mick Jagger and Taylor Swift (2015). Mick Jagger joined Taylor Swift on stage during her 1989 World Tour. Two years earlier, during their 50 & Counting tour, the Rolling Stones brought the then 23-year-old Swift to the stage for “As Tears Go By.”

 Taylor Swift & Mick Jagger - (I Can't Get No) Satisfaction (Live on The  1989 World Tour) - YouTube

“Honky Tonk Woman” (1969).

“Brown Sugar” (1971).

“Miss You” (1978).

How did The Rolling Stones get their logo? - Radio X