ARLINGTON, Texas -- Closer Joe Nathan was incredulous as he prepared to leave the ballpark after Saturday's 1-0 loss, that after warming up and not coming into a game for the eighth time in five games on this homestand, all losses.
Nathan said he'd like to get into a game, but understands what's going on here.
"I'd like to win right now," Nathan said. "Pitching is secondary to winning."
The A's had a string of lefties coming up in the ninth inning Saturday so manager Ron Washington went with Neal Cotts instead of Nathan, who last pitched when he saved Sunday's 4-3 victory over Angels in Anaheim. That seems like an eternity ago.
Nathan has pitched just twice in 11 games in September. Of course, the Rangers are 2-9 for the month, so it's no surprise.
Moreland continues slump: Mitch Moreland will take a dreadful 0-for-21 slump into Sunday's game against Oakland.
Moreland came up in the most crucial moment of the game for the Rangers' offense -- runners at second and third and two outs in the bottom of the fourth with the Rangers and Yu Darvish trailing 1-0. Moreland fanned on three straight pitches.
"Right now he's swinging and missing," manager Ron Washington said. "He's not putting the ball in play."
It's a rough time for Moreland, who is doing his best to relax. He has 14 strikeouts during this stretch. He struck out three times on 10 pitches on Saturday. He did walk with two outs in the bottom of the ninth to get the tying run on base.
"I'm working on it," Moreland said of his swing woes. "I'm going up there and battling every at-bat, looking for a good pitch to hit. See the ball and square it up.
"It's the game. You're going to have your ups and downs. People go through their slumps. That's part of it. I'm going to keep working, have fun and make the most of it. It's not fun to lose games. We're coming and trying to win."
Five-game skid: Is the third baseman Adrian Beltre stunned by this five-game losing streak the Rangers find themselves on?
"Yes," Beltre said. "We don’t expect to be in this situation but we’re trying to find ways to get out of it but nothing has been successful."
The Rangers haven't led in 45 innings on the homestand. They've lost four games by one run and another by two runs.