Neto, Renfroe and Ohtani star as Angels come back to beat Rangers

The Angels have now won the first two games of this pivotal four game series against the Rangers

Hunter Renfroe hit just his second home-run in the last month, Zach Neto continued his power surge launching another clutch home-run, and Shohei Ohtani displayed his versatility yet again mashing a double, adding another hit, stealing a base, and walking three times as the Angels pulled away for a 7-3 victory over the Rangers. The Angels have now won the first two games in this pivotal divisional series and eight out of their last nine games. Overall, the Halos have won 38 games this year, 20 of which have been come from behind victories, a miraculous feat that shows the grit and discipline of this team even when they are down.

Here are three takeaways from this game:

Hunter Renfroe finally gets going at the plate

As I mentioned in the introductory paragraph, Hunter Renfroe launched just his second home-run in the last month (since May 10th in fact) on Tuesday night as he’s been struggling at the plate immensely recently. Renfroe had such a good first month and a half at the plate, he had 10 home runs by May 10th and almost led the league in that category. Sine then, Renfroe has been an afterthought in a lineup that has leaned on Ohtani, Neto, Mike Trout, Mickey Moniak, and Matt Thaiss so it was good to see him get back on track and do what he does best…mash home-runs.

Zach Neto continues to excel on offense and defense

Zach Neto continued his hot streak at the plate launching a huge insurance home-run in the top of the 9th inning off of Jose Leclerc (one of Texas’ best relievers) and now has 7 hits and 3 home-runs over his last four games. As good as Neto has been at the plate, that was always icing on the cake for him considering he’s already one of the best defensive shortstops in baseball (just check his highlight reel on Twitter) and has saved the Angels with game-saving plays more times than I can count (most recently the 94.3 MPH throw across the diamond to Taylor Ward following a bobble to get the final out of a 5-5 game in the bottom of the 11th inning).

A lot of people questioned whether Neto was big-league ready, considering he played at Campbell University just a year ago and was the first player from the 2022 MLB Draft to make his MLB debut. However, if his defense wasn’t enough of a justification he is MLB ready, perhaps his OPS of .769 and WAR of 1.8 are enough to convince people.

Ohtani continues to rake

If you have watched any Angels games over the last week and a half, this one should come as no surprise, considering Ohtani is the hottest hitter in all of baseball right now mashing 8 home runs with 17 RBI’s while hitting .390 over his last 15 games. On Tuesday night, Ohtani doubled, singled, walked three times, and stole his 10th base of the season, continuing to showcase how his bat alone could put him in the argument of being the league’s best player (obviously if you add in his elite pitching, Ohtani is leaps and bounds the best player in baseball). After Tuesday night’s win, Ohtani is now hitting .296 with 20 home-runs (AL lead), 50 RBI’s, and an OPS of .973, and is the prohibitive favorite to win the AL MVP award.

The Angels will look to keep their momentum going, with Reid Detmers going against Andrew Heaney in the third game of this four game series against the Rangers on Wednesday afternoon. First pitch is scheduled for 5:05 PST.