Final

Series: Game 2 of 3

Texas leads 2-0 (as of 5/1)

Game 1: Friday, April 30
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Texas
Game 1: Saturday, May 1
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Game 2: Saturday, May 1
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Texas8
Game 3: Sunday, May 2
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Red Sox 5

(15-8, 7-5 away)

Rangers 8

(15-9, 9-3 home)

    9:35 PM ET, May 1, 2004

    Globe Life Park in Arlington, Arlington, Texas 

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    TEX 10410002 - 8 14 0

    W: J. Benoit (1-0)

    L: P. Martinez (3-2)

    S: F. Cordero (9)

    Martinez has shortest outing of season

    ARLINGTON, Texas -- Pedro Martinez had his shortest outing of the season for Boston, giving up six runs in four innings, and the Texas Rangers won 8-5 to complete a sweep in the doubleheader matching division leaders.

    Martinez announced Friday that he plans to test the free-agent market in the offseason. The three-time Cy Young winner won't be very attractive to anybody pitching the way he did Saturday night.

    In the first game, Texas broke a streak of 32 1/3 consecutive scoreless innings by Boston's bullpen with a three-run seventh to win 4-3.

    The Rangers, the best-hitting team in the majors and the AL West leader, batted around in a four-run third. They added another run in the fourth to take a 6-1 lead before Martinez (3-2) was replaced by Leonard DiNardo to start the next inning.

    "He misfired with his fastball in a lot of instances," manager Terry Francona said. "It just never allowed him to get in any kind of rhythm. Pretty obvious, it was a battle for him right form the get-go. He wasn't hitting his target."

    Francona said Martinez just had an off night, and that it was not related to the pitcher's decision to have no more talks during the season with the Red Sox about a new contract.

    Joaquin Benoit (1-0) pitched seven solid innings for Texas, allowing two runs on six hits. Rod Barajas had three of Texas' 14 hits, including a two-run double in the eighth.

    The Red Sox scored three runs in the ninth off Carlos Almanzar and Jay Powell before closer Francisco Cordero relieved with runners on second and third and one out. Cordero induced Bill Mueller to fly out to short-center and struck out David Ortiz for his second save of the day and ninth of the season.

    Despite the sweep, Boston still leads the AL East, by 2 games over Baltimore.

    In 11 previous starts against Texas, Martinez was 8-1 with a 1.45 ERA. And the Red Sox gave him a quick 1-0 lead with Johnny Damon's leadoff triple and Mueller's sacrifice fly.

    Texas got even in the bottom of the first on Hank Blalock's fifth homer. After going 1-2-3 in the second, with help from David Dellucci getting thrown out trying to stretch a double, Martinez struggled through the third.

    After three straight singles to start the third, including Michael Young's tiebreaking hit, Alfonso Soriano had a two-run double. Soriano scored on Brian Jordan's first hit in Texas, an infield single.

    "If you go in with an elaborate game plan against him, that will take you out the game before it even starts," Blalock said.

    Barajas and Young had consecutive one-out doubles in the fourth, the last of a season-high nine hits allowed by Martinez, who struck out three.

    The previous shortest outing for Martinez was April 15 against Baltimore, when he gave up seven runs in five innings.

    In the first game, Blalock's sacrifice fly in the seventh sent home the go-ahead run, after a pair of hit-and-run plays produced the tying run and the Rangers snapped Boston's six-game winning streak.

    Boston's bullpen hadn't given up a run in 11 games, since April 17 against the Yankees.

    Mark Malaska (1-1) gave up a single to Dellucci, the only batter he faced and the runner Blalock drove home to make it 3-2. Soriano then had an RBI double.

    Red Sox starter Bronson Arroyo allowed two runs on three hits over six-plus innings. He twice hit Eric Young, who scored both times.

    Erasmo Ramirez (1-1) had a perfect seventh against Boston's 1-2-3 hitters. Cordero pitched the ninth for the save.

    Notes: The scoreless streak by Boston's bullpen was the longest in the majors since St. Louis' 34 in a row in 2002. ... The Red Sox played their second doubleheader in three days. They won both games in a day-night twinbill Thursday at Fenway Park. ... Manny Ramirez struck out in his only four plate appearances in Game 1, his first four-strikeout game since July 23, 2002 against Tampa Bay. He was 1-for-4 with another strikeout in Game 2.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press

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