Rangers go for sweep of Angels
(Sports Network) - The Texas Rangers go after a fourth straight win and try to move even closer in the American League West standings when they attempt to finish off a three-game sweep of the woeful Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim at Angel Stadium.
Texas closed to within a game of first-place Oakland on Tuesday, as Elvis Andrus went 3-for-5 with three runs scored and an RBI and played a role in a late offensive surge that helped the Rangers to an 8-3 victory.
Adrian Beltre's go-ahead single in the eighth inning coupled with a four-run ninth made a winner of Yu Darvish (11-5), who lasted seven frames after giving up home runs to the first two batters he faced.
Darvish only allowed six more hits and one more run the rest of his outing as Texas pulled out a sixth consecutive win against its AL West rival.
"He didn't have his best stuff, but he found a way to make pitches when he had to," Rangers manager Ron Washington said. "We got base hits at the right time. Tonight we came together."
Beltre finished with two RBI, while Leonys Martin added two hits, scored twice and knocked in another run for the Rangers, who have won eight of their last nine.
The Rangers stole six bases, three of them coming from Martin.
"We took advantage of their pitchers," Andrus said. "They were slow and we stole bases. We didn't need a home run to score runs. We took advantage today and it was fun."
Kole Calhoun and Mike Trout hit back-to-back homers in the first inning for the Angels, whose starter, Garrett Richards, recorded a quality start but did not factor in the decision.
Hoping to keep the Rangers in the win column on Wednesday will be righty Alexi Ogando, who is 4-3 with a 3.26 ERA. Ogando did not get a decision on Friday in Oakland, as he allowed three runs and four hits with five walks in four innings of his team's 8-3 win.
"I just need to keep working hard and get my rhythm going," Ogando said. "That's what I focused on in my bullpen, and I think I've improved. But it's not something you can correct in one bullpen session. I've got to keep working so I can throw all of my pitches for strikes."
Ogando is a perfect 3-0 lifetime versus the Halos with a 1.85 ERA in 21 games (4 starts).
Los Angeles, meanwhile, will counter with righty Tommy Hanson, who has been banged around his last few starts. Hanson did not get a decision on Friday against Toronto, but was not impressive, as he allowed five runs (4 earned) and seven hits with three walks in 5 1/3 frames of a 7-5 win.
Hanson, who beat the Rangers in his only other start against them earlier in the season, had surrendered five runs and allowed five walks in 4 2/3 innings in his previous start.
Texas has won nine of 11 meetings with Anaheim this season.
08/07 10:51:09 ET