Wilson was excellent in his first playoff start, giving up zero runs over 6 1/3 innings while striking out seven Rays and giving up only two walks and two hits. At one point he faced 15 straight Tampa Bay batters without giving up a walk or hit.
It was a memorable start and one that put the Rangers on the verge of their first playoff series win in franchise history. I watched the whole thing while monitoring his replies from people on Twitter and the result was a weirdly cool way to crowd source an account of Wilson's playoff debut.
The tweetin' Texas timeline — comprised of selected tweets — begins below:
Pregame-1st Inning: With his presence needed on the mound, Wilson couldn't read all the warm wishes that were piling into his @box. But they were there — including one from a notable Houston Astro — and perhaps their good vibes lifted him to a good start. After giving up a leadoff single to Jason Bartlett(notes), Wilson got out of the first inning without incident.
5th inning: Michael Young(notes) smacked his controversial 3-run homer in the top of the inning, giving the Rangers a comfy 5-0 lead. Wilson responded by converting more of his doubters into fans, including a prominent liberal commentator.
7th inning: Ben Zobrist(notes) led off with a walk and Willy Aybar(notes) sent him to third with a double. It looked as if the Twitter trolls might have an opening to talk 140 characters of smack. But Wilson responded by striking out Kelly Shoppach(notes) in his final act for the night. The Rangers bullpen would take over for 2 2/3 innings of no-hit ball.
Postgame response With a 2-0 series lead secure, Rangers fans celebrated ... while one sad Rays fan looked at the bright side of things.