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Colby Lewis has roller coaster start

9/18/2011

SEATTLE -- It wasn't an outing Colby Lewis will list among his better efforts, but a win is a win.

Lewis gave up four runs in the second inning and six overall Saturday, but improved to 13-10 for the season with the Rangers' 7-6 victory over the Mariners at Safeco Field.

"They just came out hacking," Lewis said of the Mariners hitters. "A lot of those guys swung at the first pitch. Maybe they were trying to get ahead, knowing I was going to get ahead. I don’t know. I felt really good, but I think I had a couple of brain farts more than anything."

One big mistake came with two outs in the second inning when Lewis walked Michael Saunders, the No. 9 hitter for Seattle who came to the plate with a .158 batting average.

The walk loaded the bases for Ichiro Suzuki, who chopped a single up the middle to score the first two runs for the Mariners.

"In the second inning maybe I should have thrown a few more off-speed pitches," Lewis said. "Ichiro squeezed one through the middle. I feel like I’ve done a pretty good job with Ichiro all year, but he just put it in the exact right spot."

The Mariners led 4-1 after the second inning, but Texas hit three home runs in the third -- Elvis Andrus, Josh Hamilton and Adrian Beltre went deep -- to tie it at 4-4.

“Anytime you push the score back to even, it’s like 0-0,” Lewis said. “Then you just want to keep your team in the game.”

The Rangers came back to give Lewis a 7-4 lead before he allowed two more runs in the fifth inning. He left the game with two outs in the sixth and the Texas bullpen shut down the Mariners the rest of the way.

"I thought [Lewis] had a good first inning before those four runs in the second," said Rangers manager Ron Washington said. "In the middle innings he settled down and did what he had to do. The bottom line is he got us into the sixth, and when we took the ball from him, we had the lead."

All’s well that ends well in this one for Lewis.

"It was kind of a weird game, for me anyway," Lewis said. "A couple of pitches there I kind of went with the flow instead of locking in. But I’m glad we won and everything worked out the way it did. The Angels lost and we inched closer [to clinching the division title]."