ARLINGTON -- Rangers right-hander Yovani Gallardo had a strong outing on the mound and continued to be backed by his offense, especially Joey Gallo, in Wednesday afternoon's rubber game at Globe Life Park.Gallardo allowed just two runs on three hits in six innings, and Gallo launched two home runs and
ARLINGTON -- Rangers right-hander Yovani Gallardo had a strong outing on the mound and continued to be backed by his offense, especially Joey Gallo, in Wednesday afternoon's rubber game at Globe Life Park.
Gallardo allowed just two runs on three hits in six innings, and Gallo launched two home runs and recorded four RBIs in an 11-7 win over the Mariners. Gallo hit his 30th home run of the season in the third inning to give the Rangers a 4-1 lead, and he went deep again in the fifth. It is the second consecutive season that Gallo has hit at least 30 home runs. He hit a career-high 41 last season.
In the fifth, Gallo hit a solo shot that landed just over the right-field wall and gave Texas a 6-2 lead. The left-handed slugger has been hot since the All-Star break; he has nine home runs and 20 RBIs in his past 16 games.
"I think my swing is starting to develop a little bit better," Gallo said. "I've always had good hands and fast hands, but I used to have some pitches in my swing that wouldn't let me get to it. My angle to the ball … it wouldn't let me get to it. Now, my swing is kind of leveling out when I'm doing well, so obviously that just makes it easier to hit that inside pitch, that up-and-in pitch."
Gallo said he's always felt comfortable against left-handed pitching.
"I don't really mind lefties, honestly," Gallo said. "I've faced them so much, you've gotta learn how to hit them or you're not going to have a job, probably. My dad was a lefty throwing to me when I was younger, so I think maybe that helped me."
Gallo also scored Elvis Andrus on an RBI single in the first inning to give the Rangers the lead for good. Ronald Guzman chipped in and helped pace Texas' offense, recording two RBIs in a three-hit performance.
It was all the support needed for Gallardo, who has now won four consecutive games. His seven wins since June 23 are the most in the Majors during that span. Entering the day, Gallardo also had an 11.57 run-support average over that span, which was the highest in the Majors.
"It definitely helps," Gallardo said. "I've been fortunate enough to get those runs that those guys put up on the board. ... Just going out there, sticking to the game plan and making the adjustments."
Gallardo overcame an early deficit in the first inning, when he walked Jean Segura and threw a wild pitch that allowed Segura to advance to second and later score on a single from Mitch Haniger.
Gallardo, however, settled in after the first, retiring nine of the next 11 batters he faced. It was a turnaround from his last outing, when he allowed a season-high nine hits and gave up five runs to the Orioles.
"It's the mix and the experience of being in those situations," manager Jeff Banister said. "Very experienced pitcher. He knows how to maneuver his way through the lineup."
MOMENT THAT MATTERED
In the seventh inning, the Mariners rallied for four runs. Three of those came off reliever Alex Claudio, and he was later replaced in the inning by Cory Gearrin. Gearrin allowed an RBI single to Haniger, which cut the deficit to 1, but he would eventually end the threat. With two outs and a runner on first, Gearrin got Nelson Cruz to fly out to center to end the frame and preserve the lead.
The multihomer performance was Gallo's third of the season and seventh of his career. His last multihomer game came on July 20 against the Indians. Gallo also has 12 home runs off left-handed pitching this season, which are the most for a left-handed hitting Ranger since Rafael Palmeiro had 15 in 2003.
YOU GOTTA SEE THIS
With one out in the sixth inning, Rougned Odor tripled down the right-field line, his first of the season. Odor went from home to third in 11.35 seconds, the Rangers' fastest time this season.
HE SAID IT
"Sometimes a lefty evens you out. It fixes you. Sometimes I get excited when they bring in a lefty to face me. I'm like, 'Good, I need this,' as weird as it sounds. That's not everybody, but for me, it kind of balances you out. You don't want to be facing the same guy over and over, or the same righty over and over. When you face a lefty, you have to stay in on it, and it kind of helps you sometimes." -- Gallo
MITEL REPLAY OF THE DAY
With one out in the second inning, the umpiring crew ruled that Willie Calhoun wasn't hit by a pitch on an 0-1 count. Banister then challenged the play, and the call was overturned. Carlos Tocci followed with a double to put runners on second and third, but Jurickson Profar and Odor flew out to end the inning.
The Rangers will open a four-game series against the Yankees at 6:05 p.m. CT on Thursday at Yankee Stadium. Right-hander Ariel Jurado (2-1, 4.02 ERA) is scheduled to pitch in the opener; he's 2-0 with a 2.45 ERA in two starts since being called up on July 28. Recently acquired lefty J.A. Happ (11-6, 4.05) will make his second start for the Yanks.
Wesley Dotson is a reporter for MLB.com based in Arlington.