3 Biggest Heroes of Rangers' Stunning ALCS Victory

These guys carried us to the World Series.

The Rangers' 3 biggest heroes from their ALCS win over the Astros.
The Rangers' 3 biggest heroes from their ALCS win over the Astros. / Thomas Shea-USA TODAY Sports
2 of 3

2. Jordan Montgomery

While Garcia was teeing off on Astros pitching, Montgomery was busy shutting down Houston's lineup.

Montgomery was lights-out in his first playoff start against the Tampa Bay Rays before getting touched up by the Baltimore Orioles, so it was unclear which version of him would show up in the ALCS. Fortunately, it was the former.

The veteran southpaw was at the top of his game in Game 1, firing 6 1/3 innings of shutout ball to give Texas a 2-0 win to kick off the series. His next start wasn't quite as strong, but it was still plenty good as he yielded just 2 runs in 5 1/3 innings in Game 5. Unfortunately for him the Astros came back in the ninth inning to win that one.

Montgomery wasn't done yet, either. While Max Scherzer started Game 7, Montgomery was the first one out of the bullpen when the aging ace got off to another sluggish start. With the game's outcome still in doubt, Montgomery finished the third inning and got 7 huge outs in the middle of the game, scattering 3 hits but not allowing any runs.

The Rangers tacked on 4 more runs during that time, pulling away as Montgomery effectively snuffed out Houston's season.

Once again, Montgomery proved why he was the more valuable trade deadline acquisition than Scherzer (and arguably the best one in all of baseball). All he did was post a tidy 1.29 ERA across 14 innings.

The Astros were the best team in baseball against left-handed pitchers during the regular season, but they sure didn't look like it against Montgomery.