Extra Bases: Martinez continues to learn


HOUSTON – The individual wins and losses are something to ignore.

Texas Rangers right-hander Nick Martinez is doing his best to focus on getting better and not worry about a 1-8 record in 14 starts, something he takes to the hill Sunday against the Houston Astros.

Martinez needs to work on maintaining his mechanics in the middle innings and focus on trusting his stuff. Once he does that, the Rangers will be able depend on him consistently.

Since coming off the disabled list after suffering a rib injury, Martinez has posted a 7.29 ERA and is 0-3 in the four starts.

His inability to finish games, particularly when given a lead, can lead to a downward spiral. In his two most recent starts, the Rangers gave him 3-0 and 4-1 leads only to see him leave with the score tied.

The last time Martinez left a game with a lead was May 24 at Detroit.

“I've just got to go out there and keep improving and keep preparing like I did before,” he said. “I have to go out and compete and give this team a chance to win.”

Choo reaches 1,000: Left fielder/designated Shin-Soo Choo's ninth-inning single in Saturday's loss gave him 1,000 hits for his career. Choo tied a career high with four hits and is now 9-for-20 in his past five games.

"I'm happy but I would like some more wins," Choo said. "We still have a long ways to go. I never think about 1,000 hits when I get to the big leagues."

Andrus hitting well: Shortstop Elvis Andrus had two hits and drove in a run with a sacrifice fly in the loss. Andrus, who saw a 13-game hit streak snapped Friday, is hitting .368 in the past 15 games. On the season, Andrus' slash line is .274/.323/.349.

Base hits: Outfielder/first baseman Mike Carp is day-to-day with tightness in his groin. ... Right-hander Phil Klein pitched a scoreless seventh inning Saturday -- the first time since he was called up from Triple-A Round Rock that he didn't give up a run. Klein gave up a home run in each of his first two outings, becoming the only pitcher to do that in the past 100 years, according to STATS LLC.