The 2023 ALCS between the Houston Astros and Texas Rangers was destined to be a classic, and it lived up to the hype. The Rangers weren't expected to win when the series started, but they quickly announced their presence by winning the first two games in Houston.
Things were looking bleak after Texas lost all three of its home games, but the Rangers didn't give up. With their backs to the wall, they roared back to win Games 6 and 7 in dominant fashion, clinching their first pennant since 2011.
The first-ever postseason series between these two teams ended with Texas on top. Here are the three players who made it happen.
1. Adolis Garcia
Man, talk about putting a team on your back.
Garcia owned this series, especially in the second half of it when the Rangers needed him most. After going hitless in Game 1, he notched at least 1 hit and 1 RBI in each of the next six games. He really turned it on starting in Game 4, homering in four straight games to finish the series.
The All-Star slugger saved his best for last, too. Garcia smacked a ninth-inning grand slam to put the exclamation mark on Texas' Game 6 win, then followed it up by going 4-for-5 with 2 homers and 5 RBIs to pace the Rangers' big Game 7 victory. The man showed no fear whatsoever and rose to the occasion time and time again.
Garcia was a one-man wrecking crew in this series who used Houston's pitchers for batting practice. He finished the seven games with a .357 average, 5 homers and 15 RBIs, earning ALCS MVP honors in the process.
Oh, and he also got Bryan Abreu suspended for the first two games of the 2024 season. All in a day's work, I suppose.