ARLINGTON -- Big Sexy made his 11th career relief appearance on Tuesday night. It could be awhile before Bartolo Colon pitches out of the bullpen again.The Rangers are putting him back in their rotation. Martin Perez, in his second outing of the season, was the latest Rangers starter to struggle,
ARLINGTON -- Big Sexy made his 11th career relief appearance on Tuesday night. It could be awhile before Bartolo Colon pitches out of the bullpen again.
The Rangers are putting him back in their rotation. Martin Perez, in his second outing of the season, was the latest Rangers starter to struggle, allowing eight runs in three-plus innings in an 11-1 loss to the Angels at Globe Life Park.
Perez's rough start, on the same day the Rangers put Doug Fister on the disabled list with a right hip strain, left Rangers starters with a record of 4-7 and a 5.66 ERA after 13 games. That's why they need Colon in their rotation as the Rangers are 4-9 overall, their worst start since losing 10 of their first 13 in 2002.
"I think my stuff was there tonight," Perez said. "Just trying to throw a strike and I couldn't. One of those days I was trying to do my best and couldn't get good results. Just come back [Wednesday] and have a better start next time."
The Rangers needed three innings each from Jesse Chavez and Colon to finish the game. Colon allowed one run and threw 29 pitches, a good tuneup for Sunday's scheduled start against the Astros.
Colon even handled Shohei Ohtani, who pinch-hit with two outs in the ninth. Colon retired him on a grounder to second and now is getting ready to be a starter again after just two relief appearances for the Rangers.
"I watched him throw  pitches in three innings, quality-thrown strikes," manager Jeff Banister said. "He moves the ball around, does what Bartolo does. Very efficient with all his pitches."
Perez started the game by getting Zack Cozart on a flyout to right and striking out Michael Trout looking. But both outs came on full-count pitches and then Perez issued a two-out walk to Justin Upton.
Cozart went to third on a single by Jose Pujols and scored on a wild pitch. Andrelton Simmons kept the inning alive by beating out a slow chopper to third baseman Adrian Beltre, and Jefry Marte and Chris Young delivered a pair of run-scoring singles.
"We were trying to fight through it and didn't get the results," Perez said. "It was part of the game. It happens."
Trout homered off Perez in the second and Simmons did so in the third. An RBI double by Luis Valbuena gave the Angels a 6-1 lead. Perez started the fourth with walks to Trout and Upton, and that's when Banister turned to Chavez. Both runners ended up scoring in a three-run inning, and the eight runs are tied for the second-most given up by Perez in one start in his career.
"It was just the quality of strike," Banister said. "His changeup was cutting back over the plate and he couldn't get his fastball where he wanted it. He was playing behind in the ball-strike ratio."
Colon rarely has that problem. He threw 19 strikes in 29 pitches against the Angels. The Rangers are hoping he can help turn around the rotation on Sunday against the Astros.
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
Rangers miss loaded opportunity: The Rangers loaded the bases in the first two innings and missed out on chances to do some serious damage. Skaggs struck out Robinson Chirinos to end the first. Drew Robinson had an RBI double in the second and then Skaggs loaded the bases with two-out walks to Jurickson Profar and Elvis Andrus. But Skaggs, holding a 4-1 lead, escaped that one by getting Beltre on a fly to deep right.
"Just slow the game down a little bit," Skaggs said when asked to describe the key to minimizing the damage. "Just know that I want them to hit my pitch. I really need to make some good pitches with the bases loaded. Just caught a lot of breaks today."
Colon assists on spectacular double play: Colon, pitching in relief for the Rangers, had to go against Pujols with a runner on first and one out in the seventh. Pujols smashed a liner up the middle that Colon reached for with his glove and deflected high into the air. Second baseman Profar caught it on the fly and threw to first base to double off pinch-runner Ryan Schimpf.
"That was awesome," Profar said. "That ball was hit too hard. He's quick. It was coming in my direction but it was hit really hard. I saw him hit it and I just reacted to that."
"It was surreal ... I waited my whole life for this. To get the opportunity to be on this stage is awesome." Rangers infielder Isiah Kiner-Falefa on making his Major League debut.
Beltre passes Biggio
Beltre had a two-out single in the first inning, giving him 3,061 hits for his career. That passes Hall of Famer Craig Biggio and moves him into sole possession of 23rd place all time. He is 20 hits behind Cap Anson in 22nd place.
Matt Moore pitches against the Angels in the finale of a three-game series at 7:05 p.m. CT Wednesday at Globe Life Park. Moore has lost his first two starts for the Rangers, but is 4-0 with a 1.78 ERA in five career starts against the Angels.
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T.R. Sullivan has covered the Rangers since 1989, and for MLB.com since 2006. Follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger and listen to his podcast.