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    Isiah Kiner-Falefa was only five games into his first Triple-A season when he got called up by the Texas Rangers in early April. A few days later [url=http://www.vikingsauthorizedshops.com/authentic-harrison-smith-jersey]Authentic Harrison Smith Jersey[/url] , Ronald Guzman got promoted and also made his big-league debut.

    When Texas reached the midpoint of the regular season this week, the 23-year-old rookies were among eight position players on the roster who are 25 or younger.

    While the Rangers were on a 70-win pace after a loss in the 81st of their 162 games, they’ve had a recent uptick. They have won nine of their last 11 games while claiming four consecutive series in a stretch when veteran stalwarts Adrian Beltre and Elvis Andrus were finally back in the lineup together.

    In the 82nd game Wednesday night, when the Rangers (36-46) started the second half of their schedule before an off day Thursday, lefty Mike Minor took a perfect game into the seventh of a 5-2 victory over San Diego. Keone Kela, the hard-throwing 25-year-old closer, got his 20th save – the most in the majors without a blown chance and a club record to start a season.

    ”When you take all the individual parts of the first half and you look and evaluate players of where they’re trending, they’re trending in the right direction athletically as well as mentally of how they play the baseball game,” fourth-year manager Jeff Banister said. ”We’ve gained some knowledge, and some guys have proven to themselves that they can play at this level and where they’re at and what they need to work on.”

    General manager Jon Daniels has said publicly several times that the team’s priority this season is the development of its young players.

    Young sluggers Nomar Mazara and Joey Gallo were already regulars in the lineup before this season, along with second baseman Rougned Odor. Speedy center fielder Delino DeShields has been a constant since returning from a broken bone in his left hand, an injury that occurred the first weekend of the season.

    ”Our coaches [url=http://www.vikingsauthorizedshops.com/authentic-harrison-smith-jersey]Harrison Smith Jersey Big[/url] , they’ve put that development hat on,” Banister said. ”You watch them every day on the field, different players working on different things that we feel like they’re going to help these players out for the longer term, for the bigger picture.”

    Kiner-Falefa was called up when Odor, the 23-year-old already in his fourth season with Texas, went on the disabled list with a left hamstring strain. Andrus, the shortstop in his 10th season at age 29, suffered a broken elbow when hit by a pitch just a couple of days later. Beltre had more hamstring issues.

    ”Everything happened so quick,” said Kiner-Falefa, who has two starts at catcher after previous starts at second base, third base and shortstop. ”I’m trying to soak it all in. … It’s been a cool experience. I’ve had the opportunity to learn from everyone here, and all the veterans.”

    Guzman has 51 starts at first base [url=http://www.vikingsauthorizedshops.com/authentic-anthony-barr-jersey]Authentic Anthony Barr Jersey[/url] , though he is on the seven-day concussion disabled list. The Rangers were batting when Guzman slammed his head into a knee on an attempted pickoff Monday.

    Profar was 19 when he homered in his first big league at-bat in 2012, but he missed all of the 2014 and 2015 seasons because of right shoulder issues. He split each of the last two seasons between the Rangers and Triple-A Round Rock, but has started at all four infield positions this year in his most consistent action in the majors.

    ”I’ve got a really good chance to experience the big leagues, a lot of things that you want to work to be consistent on,” Profar said. ”We have very good young players here, we’re all learning. It’s going to be good for us going down the road.”

    J.T. Realmuto had another big game before another small crowd, which probably didn’t help his cause much in the All-Star voting.

    The Marlins‘ catcher homered in the fifth and singled to spark a game-winning rally as the Marlins beat the Tampa Bay Rays 3-2 in 10 innings Monday.

    Realmuto has 11 home runs and is batting .311 but ranks a distant fifth in NL All-Star fan voting.

    ”He’s a great player,” manager Don Mattingly said before the game. ”People just don’t know it yet.”

    There weren’t many at Marlins Park to spread the word. Attendance was 6,004.

    Brian Anderson walked against Ryne Stanek (1-2) to start the 10th and took third on Realmuto’s single. Yadiel Rivera followed with an RBI infield single.

    Realmuto, hoping for his first All-Star appearance, said he has no hard feelings regarding the voting.

    ”We don’t have as many fans as other teams have,” he said. ”That’s how the fan vote goes. All I can do is go out there and play and let my numbers do the talking for me.”

    The Rays lost for only the second time in 10 games [url=http://www.vikingsauthorizedshops.com/authentic-anthony-barr-jersey]Anthony Barr Jersey Big[/url] , and allowed more than two runs for the first time in seven games, ending a franchise-record streak. Tampa Bay has lost 21 one-run games, most in the majors.

    Realmuto’s solo homer put Miami ahead 2-1. The Rays’ C.J. Cron tied the game in the ninth with a two-out RBI double against closer Kyle Barraclough, who hadn’t given up a run since May 8 .

    Miami had runners at the corners in the 10th with none out when Rivera pulled a one-hopper up the line . Third baseman Matt Duffy backhanded the ball and double-clutched in foul territory before making a wild throw home, with the play ruled a hit.

    ”I tried to make a desperation play,” Duffy said. ”I didn’t get a grip and tried to rush the transfer.”

    Rivera, a reserve batting .198, entered the game in the ninth as a defensive replacement and came through with his second walk-off hit this season.

    ”We go home happy,” he said. ”That’s the best part.”

    Miami second baseman Starlin Castro tied a career high with four hits but also committed an error that led to an unearned run. Miguel Rojas had three hits, including a two-out RBI double in the second.

    The Marlins’ Wei-Yin Chen allowed one run in six innings and it was unearned, lowering his ERA to 5.55.

    ”Today was a tough one,” Rays manager Kevin Cash said. ”We didn’t have our best approach against Chen for whatever reason [url=http://www.titansauthorizedshops.com/authentic-marcus-mariota-jersey]Authentic Marcus Mariota Jersey[/url] , but you look past that and figure that we tied the game off a really good pitcher in Barraclough.”

    Tampa Bay’s Nathan Eovaldi gave up two runs in six innings. Drew Rucinski (3-1) pitched a perfect 10th for Miami.

    On a clear, 86-degree night, the retractable roof was open for the 17th time this year, extending the franchise record. Marlins owner Derek Jeter watched from the second row and had plenty of elbow room.

    BREAKTHROUGH AGAINST BARRACLOUGH

    The Rays trailed 2-1 to start the ninth but rallied against Barraclough, who entered the game with a streak of 20 2/3 consecutive scoreless innings.

    Daniel Robertson led off with a single, and following a flyout and a forceout, Jake Bauers slid home from first on Cron’s double, barely beating the throw from left field.

    TRAINER’S ROOM

    Marlins RHP Drew Steckenrider was hit in the lower right leg by Cron’s comebacker in the seventh but stayed in the game and pitched a scoreless inning, and said afterward he was fine.

    UP NEXT

    RHP Trevor Richards (2-5, 5.06) is expected to start Tuesday for the Marlins against LHP Brian Yarbrough (7-4, 3.76).

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