Thursday, March 7, 2013
Rapid Reaction: Rangers 11, Dodgers 11
By Ron Matejko
GLENDALE, Ariz. -- The Texas Rangers (4-7-2) extended its unbeaten streak to three games after playing the Los Angeles Dodgers (4-6-3) to an 11-11 tie Thursday at Camelback Ranch.
What it means: The Rangers are unbeaten in four of their last five games and and five of their last seven after a slow start to the spring season.
All tied up: Josh Lindblom allowed a three-run, game-tying home run to Matt Angle with two outs in the bottom of the ninth. The teams mutually agreed to end the game as a tie following the completion of the ninth inning.
Bat man: Leonys Martin made a grand return from his one-game absence to rest a tight hamstring with an impact performance at the plate Thursday. The center fielder went 1-for-2 and drove in three runs on a sacrifice fly and two-run single. Martin, who is battling for the starting center field job, is batting .391 this spring and is tied for second on the team with five RBIs.
Speed burner: The Rangers found out just how fast Dee Gordon is when he stole third base on a play where catcher A.J. Pierzynski made a throw to first base to complete a strikeout by Alfredo Amezaga. Mitch Moreland responded by firing the ball across the diamond, but by then Gordon was already getting up from his slide.
Hello old friend: Adrian Beltre hit his first home run of the spring during the Rangers' five-run fifth inning. His two-run blast against his former team put Texas in front 5-3 and let Randy Wells off the hook for the loss. Beltre played for the Dodgers from 1998-2004.
Wells runs dry: Wells, who is in competition for the last spot in the rotation, didn't have much luck in his third start. He finished the day allowing three runs on six hits and a walk while striking out three in four innings.
Catching on: Pierzynski went 1-for-3 on Thursday and has hit safely in six of his last seven games, good for a .389 average during that stretch (7-for-18).
Baker still raking: Jeff Baker has been on a tear lately and added a pair of singles to his current hit parade. Baker is hitting .562 (9-16) with three doubles, two RBI and four runs scored over his last seven games.
Closing early: Joe Nathan made his second appearance of the spring and allowed two runs on two hits in the fifth inning in relief of Wells. In Sunday's spring debut, Nathan didn't allow a run but threw 24 pitches while giving up one hit and walking a batter.
Rally killer: Minor leaguer Ross Wolf made his first appearance with Texas on Thursday. The right-hander came on with two outs in the bottom of the seventh and retired the only batter he faced.
What's next? The Rangers will play their second game in a stretch of four games out of five on the road when they travels to Maryvale Ballpark to face the Milwaukee Brewers for the first time this spring on Friday at 2:05 p.m. CT. RHP Jeff Beliveau (0-0, 0.00) will get the start for Texas. RHP Tyler Thornburg (0-1, 9.00) is the scheduled starter for Milwaukee.