ARLINGTON -- Starter Nathan Eovaldi took a no-hitter into the seventh inning before giving up a leadoff single to Nomar Mazara, and the Yankees held on for a 3-1 victory over the Rangers on Monday night.Eovaldi was trying to become the first Yankees pitcher to throw a no-hitter since David
ARLINGTON -- Starter Nathan Eovaldi took a no-hitter into the seventh inning before giving up a leadoff single to Nomar Mazara, and the Yankees held on for a 3-1 victory over the Rangers on Monday night.
Eovaldi was trying to become the first Yankees pitcher to throw a no-hitter since David Cone's perfect game on July 18, 1999. That bid ended when Mazara grounded a single through the left side. There have been 10 no-hitters in the regular season in Yankees history in addition to Don Larsen's perfect game in the 1956 World Series.
"They've got a lot of early swingers, and I was just trying to locate the ball in and away and locate the offspeed pitches and be careful with it," said Eovaldi, who improved to 1-2 and lowered his ERA from 6.11 to 4.38. "I feel like I've gotten better each outing. For it all to come together tonight, it was nice."
• With a dazzling array, Eovaldi nearly unhittable
Eovaldi, getting home run support from Jacoby Ellsbury and Starlin Castro, ended up going seven-plus innings, allowing two hits and two walks while striking out six. He left after a leadoff walk to Mitch Moreland in the eighth.
"Eovaldi was amazing," Rangers first baseman Prince Fielder said. "If you hold a big league team without a hit into the seventh, you're doing something right."
The Rangers didn't score until Brett Nicholas hit a solo home run off reliever Dellin Betances with two outs in the eighth. The Rangers finished with three hits in losing for the fourth straight game, and they have scored a combined five runs in that stretch.
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
Gregorius quickly atones: Yankees shortstop Didi Gregorius fumbled Fielder's leadoff grounder in the second inning for an error. On Eovaldi's next pitch, Ian Desmond ripped a hard grounder right at Gregorius, and he swept it up to start a double play. Desmond's grounder came off the bat at 106.1 miles per hour, the fourth-hardest ball he has hit this year.
Ramos' quality goes unrewarded: Rangers starter Cesar Ramos stepped in for Cole Hamels and allowed three runs in six-plus innings. Rangers starters have now completed at least five innings in 20 straight games. It was also the seventh quality start by a Rangers starter in which he did not get a win.
"I was just trying to get us deep in the game and do my part," Ramos said. "I was at least able to pitch into the seventh inning, so it worked out good."
Ellsbury gets Yanks going: Ellsbury gave the Yankees a 1-0 lead when he led off the third inning with a home run. It was his first home run of the year and his first extra-base hit off a left-hander. He had just two home runs off left-handers last year, and has only 19 homers off lefties in 1,384 career plate appearances.
Beltran slips away: Ramos, trailing 1-0 with one out in the third, was ahead 1-2 in the count to Carlos Beltran and couldn't finish it off. Ramos missed on three straight pitches, and Beltran drew a walk. Beltran scored on Mark Teixeira's double to give the Yankees a 2-0 lead.
"It was a tough matchup for [Ramos], going up against Eovaldi, but he threw the ball very well," Rangers manager Jeff Banister said. "Cesar did what we thought he would do ... keep us close and keep us within striking distance."
Yankees: Right-hander Luis Severino will make his fourth start of the season on Tuesday at 8:05 p.m. ET at Globe Life Park. At 22, Severino is the youngest MLB pitcher to start a game this season.
Rangers: Right-hander A.J. Griffin pitches against the Yankees on Tuesday at 7:05 p.m. CT in Arlington. Griffin is 2-0 with a 3.12 ERA in three career starts against the Yankees.
Watch every out-of-market regular-season game live on MLB.TV.
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.
Dave Sessions is a contributor to MLB.com and covered the Yankees on Monday.