A’s get to Gallardo, down Rangers
By Josh McSwain
Just like last night, the Rangers got on the board first. Unlike last night, it would not be enough offense to get the win as Oakland mashed two homeruns in the fifth to take a 5-1 lead and cruise to an eventual 5-3 win. Sean Nolin (1-1) got his first major league win while Yovani Gallardo took the loss to fall to 12-10.
Mike Napoli got the Rangers on the board in the second with a solo homer. Unofrunately it was one of just four hits the Rangers were able to get off of Nolin in the 5.2 innings he pitched.
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In the fifth inning, the A’s made their move. After back to back singles, Mark Cahna blasted a three run homerun to left to give the A’s a 3-1 lead just like that. Josh Reddick followed with a single, and then Danny Valencia drove him in with a blast to deep center. After that it was 5-1 and Gallardo was taken out of the game.
Neither team would score again until there were two outs in the bottom of the ninth when Prince Fielder hit a two run double that brought the Rangers within two runs. Delino DeShields had gotten on with a single and Adrian Beltre doubled to give Fielder two guys to drive in. Mike Napoli came up next, but struck out as the A’s held on.
The Astros lost again to the Angels, meaning the Rangers are still just 1.5 games back in the division. The Twins lost to the White Sox to stay a game behind the Rangers for the second wild card. The Yankees have now lost five in a row, and are now just three games ahead of the Rangers for the first wild card spot. A position that I doubted would be attainable for the Rangers earlier this month now looks like a possibility.
Texas and Oakland will play the rubber match of this series tomorrow at 2:05 PM CT as Chi Chi Gonzalez (2-5) gets the start for the Rangers against Felix Doubront (3-1).