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Texas «000400100571
Kansas City0110100104122

Rangers 5, Royals 4

CBS SportsLine.com wire reports
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KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Kenny Rogers is back in the win column.

Rogers won for the first time since July 16, and Rod Barajas homered twice and drove in four runs to lead the Texas Rangers past the Kansas City Royals 5-4 Thursday night.

Making his fifth start since serving a 13-game suspension for shoving two TV cameramen, Rogers allowed four runs -- three earned -- and 11 hits in seven innings. The All-Star lefty was backed by three double plays in the first three innings.

"Kenny was great," Barajas said. "He hadn't been himself his last few starts because his sinker hadn't been there. He hadn't been able to pitch the way he likes to pitch. Tonight we really wanted to focus on that sinker and stay away from the cutter a little bit. He gave up a lot of soft hits."

The 40-year-old Rogers (12-7) was 0-3 in his previous six starts, but he improved to 3-0 against the Royals this season with his first win since beating Oakland 10-8 on July 16. His ERA rose slightly to 3.18.

"He worked down in the zone. He worked the corners. We'd like to have fewer runs scored, but when you look back it was a good outing for him. It was a positive outing. It is something we can build on," Barajas said.

Francisco Cordero worked the ninth for his 30th save.

"Kenny is an unbelievable guy," Cordero said. "When he comes out to pitch, he looks like a kid, like he's 22. He gives everything he's got.

"He means a lot to this pitching staff. We have a lot of young pitchers and they can learn from Kenny. He knows how to pitch. He's got mound presence."

Rogers declined to speak with a group of reporters, as he has most of the season.

Rangers manager Buck Showalter said it was important for Rogers to go deep into the game because his bullpen was short.

"He pitched well," Showalter said. "It was similar to his outing in Minnesota (six shutout innings on Aug. 27). He deserved to have a win his last time out. I'm proud of his effort."

Barajas has a career-high 16 home runs, giving the Rangers a major league-record nine players with at least 15. Seven teams, including the 1991 Rangers, had eight players with 15 or more.

"It is great to set records as long as they are positive records," Barajas said. "For me to be the guy to get that record, I'm excited. It means I have the least home runs of all of them. We have a good offensive club and score a lot of runs."

Alfonso Soriano opened the fourth with a double and scored on Hank Blalock's one-out double. After rookie left-hander J.P. Howell (1-5) walked Phil Nevin, Barajas hit a 3-1 pitch off the left-field foul pole for a 4-2 Texas lead.

"That's a tough lineup and obviously they have a lot of power," Howell said. "I wish it was 335 feet down the line, instead of 330. It is the one pitch I'd like to have back."

Barajas led off the seventh with a home run on the first pitch from rookie reliever Ambiorix Burgos. It was the third multihomer game of Barajas' career, and his first since June 24, 2004, against Seattle.

"He is an offensive threat at the bottom of the order," Showalter said. "He's having another solid year."

Angel Berroa's eighth-inning single off Steve Karsay scored Terrence Long, who had doubled, to cut the Rangers' lead to 5-4. Brian Shouse struck out Denny Hocking looking to end the eighth with the bases loaded.

"When you throw great pitches in tough situations, you should be rewarded," Barajas said.

Howell, winless in 10 starts since winning his big league debut on June 11 at Arizona, gave up four runs and five hits in six innings. He struck out seven and threw a career-high 108 pitches.

"J.P. went to his off-speed stuff almost exclusively (to Barajas) and then he had to come in with a fastball on 3-1," Royals manager Buddy Bell said. "He was pitching backward from what he did before. It is a growing pain and he'll have to learn from that.

"It never does come down to one pitch or one inning. We had opportunities, but Kenny made big pitches when he had to, just like he has for years."

The Royals scored an unearned run in the second when Berroa singled with two outs and advanced to second when left fielder Kevin Mench had trouble picking up the ball for an error. Matt Diaz singled to center to score Berroa.

The Royals made it 2-0 in the second. Hocking led off with a double and scored on Long's single up the middle.

Hocking also opened the fifth with a walk and scored on Joe McEwing's single.

Rangers shortstop Michael Young went 0-for-3, including two strikeouts -- ending his 11-game hitting streak. Young and Boston's Johnny Damon are tied for the AL lead with a .323 batting average.

Notes

Bell had a hole-in-one Thursday at Lakewood Country Club. Bell, who was playing with bullpen coach Brian Poldberg and former Royals manager John Wathan, said he used an 8-iron on the 140-yard, No. 14. ... The Rangers recalled C Gerald Laird, who was hitting .310 with 17 home runs in 75 games with Triple-A Oklahoma. ... The Rangers have won nine of their past 11 games against the Royals. ... Kansas City 1B Mike Sweeney sat out his fourth consecutive game with lower back problems.

 
Copyright 2014 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
 
 
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Players of the Game
Kansas City

A. Berroa
AB 4
R 1
H 2
HR 0
RBI 1
Texas

R. Barajas
AB 4
R 2
H 2
HR 2
RBI 4
 
Texas Rangers
Gary Matthews Jr., CF5000030 .257
Michael Young, SS3000021 .323
Mark Teixeira, 1B4000032 .285
Alfonso Soriano, 2B4130000 .284
Kevin Mench, LF3010102 .276
Hank Blalock, 3B4111003 .272
Phil Nevin, DH2100211 .243
Rod Barajas, C4224002 .256
Mark DeRosa, RF4000010 .231
Totals3357531011 
Batting
2B - Alfonso Soriano (35, Howell), Hank Blalock (26, Howell)
HR - Rod Barajas 2 (16, Howell, Burgos)
RBI - Hank Blalock (79), Rod Barajas 4 (49)
SB - Alfonso Soriano (22, 3rd base off Howell/Buck)
Team LOB - 5
Fielding
DP - Blalock-Soriano-Teixeira, Young-Soriano-Teixeira, Young-Soriano-Teixeira
E - Kevin Mench (3, Misplayed grounder)
Texas Rangers
Kenny Rogers (W,12-7) 71143120 3.18
Steve Karsay (H,2) 0.1100100 7.27
Brian Shouse (H,11) 0.2000110 5.44
Francisco Cordero (S,30) 1000110 3.41
Pitches-Strikes - Kenny Rogers 105-71, Steve Karsay 10-4, Brian Shouse 14-6, Francisco Cordero 20-12
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Kenny Rogers 10-6, Brian Shouse 1-0, Francisco Cordero 2-0
Batters Faced - Kenny Rogers 30, Steve Karsay 3, Brian Shouse 3, Francisco Cordero 4
Kansas City Royals
Chip Ambres, CF4020101 .258
Joe McEwing, 3B4021011 .253
Terrence Long, LF5121003 .275
Emil Brown, RF5010025 .284
John Buck, C3000101 .220
Angel Berroa, SS4121000 .260
Matt Diaz, DH3021000 .269
   a- Aaron Guiel, PH-DH0000000 .091
   b- Paul Phillips, PH-DH1000001 .250
Justin Huber, 1B3000102 .200
Denny Hocking, 2B3210113 .238
Totals3541244417 
a-announced for Diaz in the 8th
b-hit into fielder's choice for Guiel in the 8th
Batting
2B - Terrence Long (20, Rogers), Denny Hocking (1, Rogers)
SH - Joe McEwing (4)
RBI - Joe McEwing (6), Terrence Long (47), Angel Berroa (35), Matt Diaz (7)
2-OUT RBI - Matt Diaz (3)
Team LOB - 9
Fielding
DP - Hocking-Berroa-Huber, Berroa-Hocking-Huber
E - Emil Brown (10, Misplayed grounder), John Buck (3, Wild throw)
Kansas City Royals
J.P. Howell (L,1-5) 6544271 7.08
Ambiorix Burgos 1111021 3.54
Jeremy Affeldt 2100110 5.14
HBP - Young (by Ambiorix Burgos)
WP - J.P. Howell 2 (6)
Pitches-Strikes - J.P. Howell 108-59, Ambiorix Burgos 15-10, Jeremy Affeldt 38-21
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - J.P. Howell 7-4, Jeremy Affeldt 2-2
Batters Faced - J.P. Howell 25, Ambiorix Burgos 5, Jeremy Affeldt 7
Game Information
Attendance - 12735
Game Time - 2:55
Temperature - 78
Umpires - Home - Lazaro Diaz, First Base - Dana DeMuth, Second Base - Marty Foster, Third Base - Adam Dowdy