Rapid Reaction: Rangers 5, Indians 3
Texas Rangers reliever Koji Uehara allowed two runs in the bottom of the ninth on a Casey Kotchman home run before closer Joe Nathan came in and shut the door on the Cleveland Indians for a 5-3 Rangers' win.
Since the trade: Ryan Dempster made his sixth start with the Rangers since being traded from the Chicago Cubs. He kept the Indians hitless for 3.2 innings. Dempster pitched six innings of two-hit ball, allowing one unearned run with three walks and seven strikeouts.
Stolen away: Ian Kinsler stole second base in the first inning. It’s his first stolen base since August 8.
Running home: One batter after stealing that base, Kinsler scored his 91st run of the season on Adrian Beltre’s RBI single. Kinsler is second in the American League in runs scored.
Walk this way: Josh Hamilton saw 15 pitches in his first two plate appearances. He preceded Beltre’s 82nd RBI with a seven-pitch first-inning walk. Hamilton looked at eight pitches for a one-out walk in the third. He later scored on Michael Young’s infield RBI single.
RISP reward: David Murphy entered Friday’s game batting .389 (28-for-72) with runners in scoring position and 39 RBIs. He drove in the Rangers' third run with a third inning single hit the opposite way to left field.
Extra outs: Shortstop Elvis Andrus was charged with two errors in the fourth inning. He has 15 errors this season. The first was a throwing error on what could have been a double play, but his throw was wild of Dempster covering first base and the ball went out of play. That baserunner wound up scoring on Carlos Santana’s RBI single for a 3-1 Rangers' lead. Elvis mishandled a grounder off the bat of the next batter, Kotchman. This is the first multi-error game for Andrus in his career. Young in 2007 was the last Rangers shortstop to have a two-error game.
More RISP and reward: Kinsler hit his 36th double of the season with two outs in the sixth inning. Murphy had tripled to begin the inning. That Kinsler hit ended a stretch where the Rangers were 0-for-5 with runners in scoring position. The Rangers went up 4-1, and that was the end of the night for Indians starting pitcher Ubaldo Jimenez.
Frustration: Nelson Cruz was 0-for-4 with three strikeouts. When Esmil Rogers struck him out in the seventh inning, Cruz hammered the barrel of his bat to the ground, and home plate umpire Bill Welke promptly ejected Cruz. The ejection resulted in Hamilton moving from center field to right, and Craig Gentry entered the game to play center.
Four for Friday: For the second consecutive Friday, Beltre had a four-hit game. Those are his only four-hit games of the season. Beltre was 4-for-5 against the Indians with two singles, two doubles and two runs scored. He also drove in one run.
Streaking: Andrus had a single in the ninth inning that extended his hitting streak to 27 games versus the Indians. He tied Ivan Rodriguez for the longest hitting streak by a Ranger against a single opponent. According to Elias Sports Bureau, the 27-game streak for Andrus is the first career-opening hit streak against one opponent since Vladimir Guerrero hit in his first 44 games against the Rangers.
The last time: Prior to tonight’s start, Dempster last faced the Indians in 2006.
Road trip: The Rangers have begun a 10-game road trip which features three at Cleveland, four at Kansas City and three at Tampa Bay.
On deck: The Rangers meet the Indians for the second game of this three-game series at 6:05 p.m. Saturday. RHP Scott Feldman (6-10, 4.95) and RHP Roberto Hernandez (0-3, 7.53) are the starting pitchers. Hernandez is the pitcher formerly known as Fausto Carmona. Rangers Insider begins on ESPN Dallas 103.3 FM at 5 p.m., and Rangers Baseball Tonight is at 5:30 on the Texas Rangers ESPN Radio Network.
103.3 FM ESPN PODCASTS
Play Podcast Ron Washington joins Fitzsimmons & Durrett for his weekly visit to discuss the magnitude of Monday's win against Oakland, how he plans on using Jurickson Profar and how to handle a struggling ballclub.
Play Podcast Nolan Ryan joins Galloway & Company to discuss the Rangers' six-game losing streak and how to get out of their slump.
Play Podcast General manager Jon Daniels joins Fitzsimmons & Durrett to discuss the Rangers' offensive struggles, injuries and the plan for Jurickson Profar once Ian Kinsler returns from the disabled list.
Play Podcast Jim Bowden joins Fitzsimmons & Durrett for his weekly visit to discuss the Rangers and a potential game-changing trade target for Jon Daniels and company.
Play Podcast Neal Cotts joins Galloway & Company to discuss pitching for the Rangers.
Play Podcast Nolan Ryan joins Galloway & Company to discuss the latest Rangers news, the mistakes the team has been making and possible trades.
Play Podcast Steve Busby joins Fitzsimmons & Durrett to talk about the Rangers' road trip, surviving an 18-inning game and more.
Play Podcast Eric Nadel, the radio voice of the Texas Rangers, explains on Galloway & Company the bullpen situation that forced Ron Washington's hand in the Boston finale.