Over the weekend, The Texas Rangers (48-50) swept the Tampa Bay Rays (51-48) in a three-game series at Tropicana Field. After this weekend, the Rangers are 4-2 against the Rays this season.
Ranger shortstop Elvis Andrus started the weekend for the Rangers’ offense with a solo home run, his 12th, in the first inning of game one. The Rangers watched Tampa Bay hit three solo home runs before right fielder Shin-Soo Choo hit a game-tying, two-run home run, his 14th, in the ninth inning off Tampa Bay closer Alex Colome. Then, Andrus capped his three-hit game with a go-ahead single in the 10th inning after Tampa Bay elected to intentionally-walk Choo.
Ranger starter Yu Darvish limited Tampa Bay’s offense to three runs, all from solo home runs, in eight innings. Darvish also only walked one and struck out 12 in his potential last start as a Ranger. Then, Ranger closer Alex Claudio relieved Darvish and earned the win after allowing a hit over two scoreless innings. Rangers won 4-3.
Andrus hit a solo home run, his 13th, in the fourth inning to start the Rangers’ offense in game two. Two innings later, two runs scored and Ranger third baseman Adrian Beltre reached base because of Tampa Bay center fielder Mallex Smith’s fielding error. Later in the sixth, Beltre scored on a wild-pitch from Tampa Bay starter Chris Archer.
Andrus finished game two with three hits, his second three-hit game of the series.
Ranger starter Andrew Cashner pitched six innings with three walks, four strikeouts and allowed three earned runs, all in the third inning. Then, relievers Jose Leclerc and Keone Kela earned holds with scoreless appearances and Claudio finished the game with a four-out save. Rangers win 4-3.
Ranger designated hitter Mike Napoli gave the Rangers a one-run lead with a sacrifice-fly in the second inning. Later in the inning, Ranger second baseman Rougned Odor doubled the Rangers’ lead with a solo home run, his 18th. In the fifth inning, Ranger first baseman Joey Gallo hit a solo home run, his 23rd, to cut Tampa Bay’s lead to two runs. Then, Odor hit another home run, his 19th, to drive-in two runs and tie the game, 5-5. Later in the inning, Ranger center fielder Carlos Gomez drove-in the last run of the series with a solo home run, his 13th, to finish the three-run rally.
Ranger starter Tyson Ross struggled against the Rays through 3 2/3 innings and surrendered five runs, four earned, on four walks and five hits in game three. The bullpen pitched better during 5 1/3 innings while only allowing two hits, three walks and zero runs. Ranger relievers Tony Barnette, Matt Bush, Jason Grilli and Leclerc were responsible for the bullpen’s success on Sunday’s series finale. The bullpen’s success earned Bush and Grilli holds and Leclerc the save.
Beltre is 13 away from 3,000 career hits after the weekend-series sweep in St. Petersburg.
The Rangers will travel from St. Petersburg to Arlington to start a nine-game home stand against the other Florida team, the Miami Marlins (44-52), for a three-game series. This is the Rangers’ first home series of the second half after following the All-Star break with a 10-game road trip. These games can be heard on:
Monday- Franchise 2 1560AM at 6:30 CT
Tuesday- Franchise 2 1560AM at 6:30 CT
Wednesday- Franchise 2 1560AM at 6:30 CT