Wednesday, August 8, 2012
Texas Rangers 10, Boston Red Sox 9
Texas pulls out a much-needed road win in slugfest.
The Texas Rangers went old-school Wednesday afternoon at Fenway Park, defeating the Boston Red Sox 10-9 to win a tough road series. The victory improved Texas to 65-45, six games ahead of the Oakland A's for first place in the AL West. Boston fell to 55-57.
The game was a back-and-forth affair largely devoid of pitching. Texas opened the scoring in the top of the first, when Josh Hamilton tripled in Ian Kinsler and Elvis Andrus, then scored on Adrian Beltre's sacrifice fly to left to make it 3-0 Texas.
Boston struck back in the bottom frame, however, when Adrian Gonzalez doubled in Dustin Pedroia, then scored on Cody Ross' RBI single to make it 3-2.
After Ross tied the game with a solo home run in the bottom of the third, Texas put three more runs up on the board in the fifth off a solo home run from Mitch Moreland, and a two-run home run from Hamilton that scored Andrus and made it 6-3 Texas.
In the bottom frame, Boston again rallied. Gonzalez double in Carl Crawford to make it 6-4, then advanced to third as Rangers starter Matt Harrison loaded the bases with a pair of two-out walks. Disgruntled reliever Roy Oswalt then replaced Harrison and promptly threw a passed ball that scored Gonzalez to make it 6-5, before he struck out Kelly Shoppach to end the rally.
Texas created some breathing room in the next two innings, as Geovany Soto hit a two-run homer in the sixth and Nelson Cruz added a solo shot in the seventh to make it 9-5 Texas. But Boston struck back in the bottom of the seventh, scoring four runs to tie it on another Adrian Gonzalez RBI double, and a three-run blast from Will Middlebrooks that chased the recently ineffective Oswalt from the game.
With the score tied at 9-9 heading into the top of the ninth, Andrus led off with a walk, advanced to third on Hamilton's single and then scored on Beltre's sacrifice fly to make it 10-9. Rangers closer Joe Nathan nearly got himself in trouble when he allowed a one-out double to Ross in the bottom of the inning, but struck out Middlebrooks and Ryan Lavarnway to end the game and earn his 23rd save of the year.
Harrison pitched one of his worst games of the year, allowing five runs on eight hits over just four-plus innings, walking three and striking out three. Alexi Ogando threw two hitless, scoreless innings in relief of Oswalt for the win.
Red Sox starter Josh Beckett was even worse, giving up eight runs over five innings. Reliever Clayton Mortensen was credited with the loss.
Texas next heads back to Arlington for a three-game series against the 60-50 Detroit Tigers, starting Friday night.