Rangers walk off with win over Mariners
ARLINGTON -- Adrian Beltre walked with the bases loaded in the bottom of the ninth against reliever Fernando Rodney to give the Rangers a 4-3 victory over the Mariners on Monday night. The Rangers have won five straight games, and eight in a row at home.
Ryan Strausborger led off the ninth by pushing a bunt past Rodney for a hit. Delino DeShields dropped an attempted sacrifice bunt and beat it out for a hit when third baseman Kyle Seager was late with his throw to first. Rodney then hit Shin-Soo Choo to load the bases.
Rodney struck out Prince Fielder, but Beltre worked the count full before taking the free pass. It was the Rangers' sixth walk-off win of the season.
"In that situation I'm trying to do anything to come through, a walk, fly ball, anything," Beltre said. "We are playing with a lot more confidence. We're doing better in our situational hitting, and our pitching has been great. We've got to keep it up."
Rodney endured his fifth loss to go along with six blown saves as he again struggled with his control with a game on the line as Seattle endured its ninth walk-off loss, tied with the Reds for the most in the Majors.
"He hit a guy, almost hit another and he walked the winning run in," said Mariners manager Lloyd McClendon. "It's command."
Rangers starter Cole Hamels, in his first start since Aug. 7, went seven innings and allowed three runs on seven hits, four walks and eight strikeouts. He had a 2-0 lead after three and a 3-2 lead after six but left with the game tied. Mariners starter Taijuan Walker allowed three runs in six innings. He alllowed 10 hits and a walk, but the Rangers were 1-for-7 off him with runners in scoring position.
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
Choo unleashes arm: The Mariners tied it up in the seventh on a one-out single by Ketel Marte that also left runners at the corners. Seager followed with a line drive to right that Choo caught on the run and then fired to home plate to nail Logan Morrison trying to score. Choo's throw was measured at 89.2 mph, according to Statcast™.
"What a fantastic throw," Rangers manager Jeff Banister. "If he doesn't throw out that runner, it changes the whole complexion of the game." More >
Turning the trend: Seager snapped an 0-for-26 streak with runners in scoring position with a 12th-inning RBI single in Sunday's win in Boston, then followed that up with another run-scoring hit in the fifth inning Monday. That's a welcome turnabout for the Mariners third baseman, who is hitting .181 (19-for-105) with RISP, though he still ranks third on the Mariners in RBIs with 48 and is hitting .262 overall. Seager batted .301 with runners in scoring position last season.
Beltre doubles past Manny: Beltre drove in the Rangers' first two runs with a pair of doubles in the first and third innings. The two doubles gave him 548 for his career, 29th most in Major League history. He passed Manny Ramirez and is one behind Chipper Jones.
"It's always nice to get your pitcher an early lead like that and come through with some big hits." Beltre said.
"I was in. I knew how fast he was. He bunted it, not too firm, but right at me. I came up and took a peek at second just to see if there was a play there, and when I threw it to first, he beat it." -- Seager, on DeShields beating out the sacrifice attempt in the ninth to key the winning rally More >
SOUND SMART WITH YOUR FRIENDS
Mariners right fielder Nelson Cruz extended his on-base streak to a career-high 28 games, the longest streak in the American League this year, with a first-inning single.
UPON FURTHER REVIEW
Mariners manager Lloyd McClendon challenged a safe call on DeShields' bunt in the ninth inning. Seager hesitated on the throw to first on the sacrifice attempt and DeShields' foot hit the bag just as the ball reached Robinson Cano's glove. But after a review, the call stood and DeShields was credited with a single.
Mariners: Hisashi Iwakuma pitches for the first time since last week's no-hitter when Seattle faces Texas at 5:05 p.m. PT in Arlington. The veteran right-hander is 2-0 with a 1.46 ERA over his last three starts and has thrown a career-high 118 and 116 pitches in his last two outings. He's 7-3 with a 3.50 ERA in 13 career outings against the Rangers.
Rangers: Right-hander Chi Chi Gonzalez pitches for the Rangers at 7:05 p.m. CT on Tuesday against the Mariners. It will be his first start against the Mariners. Masters and U.S. Open champion Jordan Spieth of Dallas will throw out the ceremonial first pitch.
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