Sunday, September 30, 2012
LA Angels 5, Texas Rangers 4 (first game of doubleheader)
Rangers blow it in the ninth in disappointing home loss.
ARLINGTON The Texas Rangers blew the first game of their Sunday doubleheader at Rangers Ballpark in Arlington, losing 5-4 to the LA Angels. The loss was their second straight and dropped Texas to 92-66, just one and a half games ahead of the Oakland A's for first place in the AL West. The Rangers close out the regular season with a three-game road series against Oakland.
Los Angeles improved to 88-70, keeping their slim playoff hopes alive. With the win, they are just two games behind Oakland for the second wild card spot.
With the Rangers leading 4-3 heading into the top of the ninth, normally reliable closer Joe Nathan got into trouble, giving up a single to Maicer Izturis and walking Chris Ianetta on four straight outside balls to put two runners on with one out. Nathan was able to strike out Angels leadoff threat Mike Trout, but Torii Hunter took advantage of a rattled Nathan and doubled off the wall in left, scoring both runs and making it 5-4 Angels.
The poor showing ruined a solid game from Rangers starter Yu Darvish, who allowed three runs on nine hits over six-plus innings. Darvish walked just one while striking out seven.
Angels starter Zack Greinke was a little off his game, giving up four runs over seven-plus innings. Garrett Richards got the final out of the eighth to take credit for the win.