Rangers need to avoid letdown

Rangers need to avoid letdown

ARLINGTON -- The Rangers have a chance to sweep the Blue Jays in Game 3 tonight (8 p.m. ET, FOX Sports 1/Sportsnet), but they have been in this situation before. In 2010 they won the first two games of the best-of-five American League Division Series against the Rays at Tropicana Field. They came home up 2-0 looking to close it out and ended up losing two straight.

They advanced only by winning Game 5 back in St. Petersburg off a complete-game pitching performance by Cliff Lee.

Game Date Result
Gm 1 Oct. 8 TEX 5, TOR 3
Gm 2 Oct. 9 TEX 6, TOR 4
Gm 3 Oct. 11 TOR 5, TEX 1
Gm 4 Oct. 12 TOR 8, TEX 4
Gm 5 Oct. 14 TOR 6, TEX 3
Shop for official Rangers postseason gear

"It was different back then," shortstop Elvis Andrus said before Saturday's workout at Globe Life Park. "That was our first playoff experience. We thought we had won the series already and when we came back here, we didn't play with the same energy and level of confidence. They came back. Now we have a lot more experience and we'll continue to play hard."

There have been 29 best-of-five postseason series in which the home team lost the first two games. Only twice has a team comeback to win the series. The Yankees did it in 2001 against the Athletics and the Giants did it in 2012 against the Reds.

"Being up 2-0 is not going to change our mentality or how we play," first baseman Mike Napoli said. "Well get in a good work day, stick to our game plan and execute.

The Rangers have won seven straight road games in Division Series play, the longest in history by an American League club.

"To go into Toronto and win two, that was special," catcher Chris Gimenez said. "Everybody would have been completely happy with a split. But you see teams come back, and they have the offense to do it. We've got to keep playing the way we are."

T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.