" Unsung heroes: Second-year outfielder Reggie Willits went 2-for-5 and scored two runs while Orlando Cabrera went 2-for-4 including an RBI double.
" Figure this: Sammy Sosa hit his 596th career home run for the Rangers, his first home run since April 27th.
" Figure this II: The Angels have won three straight games, but are 6-10 on the road this season. Gary Matthews Jr. had two RBI for the Angels and has six RBIs in the last three games.
" Quotable: "That's as good a game as I've seen him throw. His fastball command was terrific. The fact that he established it early helped him keep down his pitch count. It would have been nice to see him finish, but the bigger thing is he got us 25 outs.'' -- Angels manager Mike Scioscia.
-- ESPN.com news services
Angels 6, Rangers 3
Lackey, a native of Abilene, Texas, struck out seven and walked one to even his career record against the Rangers to 8-8.
Lackey had a fastball in the low to mid-90s and was consistently ahead of the Rangers hitters. He threw 95 pitches, 69 for strikes.
"That's as good a game as I've seen him throw," Angels manager Mike Scioscia said. "His fastball command was terrific. The fact that he established it early helped him keep down his pitch count. It would have been nice to see him finish, but the bigger thing is he got us 25 outs."
In the ninth, Michael Young broke up Lackey's bid for his sixth career shutout with an RBI double and Sosa added a two-run drive for his eighth of the season. Scot Shields replaced Lackey (5-3) and got the last two outs.
Lackey said he was able to keep his pitch count down "because I threw a lot of fastballs. The early runs by our guys helped me a lot."
After he was removed from the game, Lackey was angry with himself.
"It would have been nice to get a shutout, but a win's a win," he said. "I'm not going to lie. I was pretty mad when I didn't get it."
Lackey tried to get a fastball over the inside corner to Sosa, but the pitch caught too much of the plate.
"He's got 500 and some homers," Lackey said. "I threw him that pitch about eight times tonight and he finally hit it."
Sosa said he hasn't been obsessed with the long ball as he tries to become the fifth player in major league history to reach 600 home runs. He hadn't homered since April 27.
"I'm not only thinking about homers," he said. I'm trying to do things to help the team win games. Lackey was pitching great. He was dealing. He threw me fastballs all night and I finally got one."
The Angels opened the season with a three-game sweep of the Rangers. Los Angeles has won 36 of the past 51 meetings.
The Rangers had 16 hits in a 14-2 rout of the New York Yankees on Thursday, but Texas was held in check by Lackey.
Los Angeles scored two runs in the third inning against Vicente Padilla (1-5) when Cabrera singled in a run and Matthews hit a sacrifice fly.
The Angels took advantage of a Texas miscue to score two more in the fifth. With the bases loaded and one out, Matthews hit a potential double-play grounder that went through the legs of second baseman Ian Kinsler for an error, allowing Cabrera and Willits to score.
"Sometimes he loses a little focus," Rangers manager Ron Washington said. "If he makes that double play, we're off the field."
Said Kinsler: "I wasn't trying to let it go through my legs. It happens and it's probably not the last time. You want to turn two, I just missed it."
Padilla lasted seven innings, allowing four runs -- three earned -- and seven hits. He struck out three and walked three.
The Rangers have scored three runs or less for Padilla in seven of his eight starts.
"Padilla is one guy we haven't supported very well," Washington said. "The team lost this game, not Padilla."
The Rangers turned a strange inning-ending double play in the second. With runners on first and third, Morales hit a sharp grounder up the middle that glanced off Padilla's foot and directly to Young at shortstop. Young stepped on second and threw to first to complete the double play. ... Kinsler has seven errors in 33 games. He had 18 in 119 games as a rookie last season. ... Lackey has lasted at least six innings in each of his past five starts. ...Sosa has homered off 361 different pitchers.