(Sports Network) – Michael Young finished with three hits, three runs batted in and three runs scored, as Texas opened the floodgates late in an 11-4 rout of Detroit in the first contest of a brief two-game set at Rangers Ballpark.
Elvis Andrus had two hits and scored twice, David Murphy homered as part of a three-hit, two-RBI attack, and the Rangers pounded out 14 hits in their sixth straight victory. Texas has a sizeable nine-game advantage over Oakland in the American League West and appears to playing its best baseball at the right time.
That was especially true of Dustin Nippert (4-4), who pitched 4 1/3 scoreless frames while surrendering three hits and one walk with three strikeouts. He came into the game in the fifth for Derek Holland, who lasted just four frames.
Jeremy Bonderman gave up four runs — three earned — in five frames, but the loss went to Robbie Weinhardt (1-2), who gave up three runs — just one earned — on four hits while retiring just two batters. Casper Wells went 4-for-4 with an RBI, as the Tigers lost for the third time in four games.
The Rangers struck first in their initial at-bat as Young scored when Vladimir Guerrero grounded out.
Detroit tied the game in the second and built a three-run edge over three consecutive at-bats. Ramon Santiago’s sacrifice fly tied the game in the second.
Jhonny Peralta’s sacrifice fly scored Scott Sizemore and Wells’ base hit plated Ryan Raburn for a 3-1 advantage. In the fourth, the Tigers again took advantage of a Rangers miscue, putting Santiago at second on an error by Nelson Cruz. He scored on Sizemore’s one-out single to left.
Texas put on a game-tying three-spot in the home fourth. Murphy socked a solo shot to right — a moon shot that barely cleared the wall and was upheld after a review. Guerrero was plunked by a pitch, but was erased on Cruz’s grounder to short. A wild pitch moved Cruz into scoring position and Ian Kinsler walked in front of Mitch Moreland’s single to center. A two-out fielding error on a grounder by Andrus to Brandon Inge allowed Kinsler to score the tying run.
The Rangers broke the game wide open with seven runs over the sixth and seventh frames. Andrus singled with one out and scampered to third on Young’s single. Another defensive miscue, this one by second baseman Will Rhymes, allowed Andrus to score. Cruz’s two-out single to left plated Young and Kinsler followed suit, allowing Murphy to cross the plate with the team’s seventh run.
In the seventh, Matt Treanor led off with a single and moved to second on Julio Borbon’s base hit. Andrus followed with a bunt hit down the third-base line, and Young’s double cleared the bases. He eventually scored the game’s final run on Guerrero’s sacrifice fly to center.
Kinsler was suspended for one game for his inappropriate actions during and after Friday’s win over the New York Yankees, Major League Baseball announced on Tuesday. He was ejected for arguing with umpire Dale Scott in the bottom of the 10th inning, then following Cruz’s game-winning homer in the bottom of the 13th, he returned to the field as Cruz was rounding the bases, which was in violation of MLB official rule 4.07. He is appealing the suspension and finished 1-for-2 with a run scored and three walks on Tuesday…Murphy hit his 10th home run of the season…Sizemore had two hits in defeat.