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L.A. Angels (42-34)0000013037110
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Angels rally in ninth, but Blalock's walk-off rescues Rangers

CBSSports.com wire reports
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ARLINGTON, Texas -- Hank Blalock didn't put any extra significance on Wednesday night's game-winning homer or his team's success thus far against the Los Angeles Angels.

Blalock's second home run of the game, a two-run shot with two outs in the ninth inning, gave Texas a 9-7 victory and moved the Rangers within one-half game of the first-place Angels in the AL West.

"If you think one game is more important than another, that means you're not trying to win against a team with a worse record," Blalock said. "You've got to take every game as serious as you can because once it gets later in the year, you start thinking about the games you let slip away."

The Angels rallied from a 7-1 deficit by scoring three runs in both the seventh and ninth. Juan Rivera's three-run homer with two outs in the top of the ninth off Frank Francisco (2-1) tied the game at 7.

"We didn't get it done in regulation like we wanted to," Rangers manager Ron Washington said. "But the character in that clubhouse showed up."

  Hamilton goes 1 for 7 in Triple-A rehab start

Michael Young singled off Justin Speier (3-2) leading off the Texas ninth. David Murphy dropped down a sacrifice bunt to move Young to second and Marlon Byrd struck out.

Blalock, who homered in the fourth, hit the first pitch into the grassy area beyond the fence in center field.

Texas, who took two of three from the Angels in the series, improved to 5-1 against Los Angeles this season. The teams meet again for a three-game set next week in Anaheim.

"They're owning us right now," Angels center fielder Torii Hunter said. "We're playing good games against them. They just seem coming through with the big hit."

The Angels elected to pitch to Blalock, who had three hits, instead of walking him to face rookie Julio Borbon, who had been called up from the minors Monday.

"I'm smart enough to know that I didn't want to give into him there," Speier said. "I made a mistake. I gave him something way too good to hit with a base open."

Los Angeles completed its comeback against Francisco, who pitched the ninth in a save situation for the first time since coming off the disabled list June 20.

Bobby Abreu and Hunter walked with one out. After Vladimir Guerrero fouled out to first, Rivera drove a 2-0 pitch into the Rangers bullpen in right to tie the score at 7.

"It was uncharacteristic of Frankie not to close the door," Blalock said. "But when a guy doesn't have his stuff that night, it's up to the offense to pick him up."

Texas starter Kevin Millwood, who went 4-1 with a 1.30 ERA in June, gave up four runs and eight hits in 6 1/3 innings.

Angels starter Jered Weaver allowed seven runs, the most he has given up this season, and eight hits in 5 1/3 innings. The right-hander, who had won five of his previous six starts, saw his ERA climb from 2.65 to 3.10.

The Rangers scored five runs in the sixth to take a 7-1 lead.

Borbon batted for Nelson Cruz, who left the game with a stiff lower back, and drove a single to center to put Texas on top 3-1.

Texas added runs on a wild pitch and Chris Davis' grounder. Young and Murphy capped the sixth with consecutive RBI singles that gave the Rangers a six-run lead.

Chone Figgins had an RBI triple and Hunter added a two-run double that made it 7-4 in the seventh.

The inning was cut short when Guerrero was caught stealing second, one of four times an Angels runner was thrown out on the bases.

"It was one of those games where we didn't do a lot right," Weaver said. "We gave that game away."

Notes

  • Rangers CF Josh Hamilton went 1 for 7 as the DH on Wednesday night for Triple-A Oklahoma City in his minor league rehab assignment. Hamilton, recovering from abdominal surgery, will likely play the field for Oklahoma City on Thursday and Friday. If all goes well, he could be activated over the weekend.
  • Angels manager Mike Scioscia said he's still planning on activating RHP Ervin Santana for a weekend start against Baltimore, with Friday night the probable target date. Santana has been out since June 12 with right forearm stiffness.
  • The Nick Adenhart Memorial Fund made a $5,000 donation to Halfway, Md., Little League on Wednesday. It was the first donation from the charitable fund named for the Angels pitcher who was killed in a car accident April 9.
 
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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Hank Blalock's second home run of the game moves the Rangers to within a half-game of the Angels. (AP)
Hank Blalock's second home run of the game moves the Rangers to within a half-game of the Angels. (AP)

Players of the Game
Texas

H. Blalock
AB 5
R 3
H 3
HR 2
RBI 3
Anaheim

J. Rivera
AB 5
R 1
H 2
HR 1
RBI 3
 
Los Angeles Angels
Chone Figgins, 3B4121111 .312
Bobby Abreu, RF2200301 .296
Torii Hunter, CF4112112 .305
Vladimir Guerrero, DH4130102 .289
Juan Rivera, LF5123002 .304
Kendry Morales, 1B4010021 .280
Maicer Izturis, 2B3001014 .286
Jeff Mathis, C3000010 .202
   a- Mike Napoli, PH-C1000011 .295
Erick Aybar, SS4120011 .275
Totals34711768  
a-struck out for Mathis in the 8th
Batting
2B - Chone Figgins (15, Francisco), Torii Hunter (17, Millwood), Vladimir Guerrero (7, Millwood)
3B - Chone Figgins (5, Millwood)
HR - Juan Rivera (14, Francisco)
SF - Maicer Izturis (4)
RBI - Chone Figgins (23), Torii Hunter 2 (59), Juan Rivera 3 (46), Maicer Izturis (25)
2-OUT RBI - Juan Rivera 3 (22)
SB - Chone Figgins (24, 2nd base off Millwood/Saltalamacchia), Torii Hunter (13, 3rd base off O'Day/Saltalamacchia)
CS - Vladimir Guerrero (1, 2nd base by O'Day/Saltalamacchia)
Team LOB - 8
Fielding
Outfield Assists - Torii Hunter 1
DP - Morales-Aybar
Los Angeles Angels
Jered Weaver 5.1877131 3.10
Kevin Jepsen 0.2200000 11.68
Matt Palmer 2000120 5.00
Justin Speier (L,3-2) 0.2222011 4.55
HBP - Saltalamacchia (by Jered Weaver), Byrd (by Matt Palmer)
WP - Jered Weaver (2)
Pitches-Strikes - Jered Weaver 96-60, Kevin Jepsen 9-5, Matt Palmer 26-15, Justin Speier 15-10
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Jered Weaver 7-7, Matt Palmer 2-1, Justin Speier 1-0
Batters Faced - Jered Weaver 27, Kevin Jepsen 3, Matt Palmer 7, Justin Speier 4
Texas Rangers
Ian Kinsler, 2B5000003 .263
Michael Young, 3B5131000 .315
David Murphy, LF-RF4011011 .258
Marlon Byrd, CF3110111 .287
Hank Blalock, DH5333002 .245
Nelson Cruz, RF2110011 .264
   a- Julio Borbon, PH-LF2111000 .200
Jarrod Saltalamacchia, C2100111 .248
Chris Davis, 1B4012013 .203
Omar Vizquel, SS4110012 .297
Totals36912826  
a-singled for Cruz in the 6th
Batting
2B - Marlon Byrd (25, Jer. Weaver), Hank Blalock (12, Jer. Weaver)
HR - Hank Blalock 2 (16, Jer. Weaver, Speier)
SH - David Murphy (2)
RBI - Michael Young (30), David Murphy (22), Hank Blalock 3 (35), Julio Borbon (1), Chris Davis 2 (33)
2-OUT RBI - Michael Young (11), David Murphy (7), Hank Blalock 2 (11), Chris Davis (12)
SB - Nelson Cruz (13, 2nd base off Jer. Weaver/Mathis)
Team LOB - 6
Fielding
Outfield Assists - Marlon Byrd 1, David Murphy 1
DP - Millwood-Vizquel-Young-Kinsler, Byrd-Saltalamacchia
E - Julio Borbon (1, Misplayed grounder)
Texas Rangers
Kevin Millwood 6.1844340 2.80
Darren O'Day (H,9) 0.2000100 1.27
C.J. Wilson (H,5) 1100030 2.73
Frank Francisco (BS,2; W,2-1) 1233211 2.28
HBP - Morales (by Kevin Millwood)
WP - Kevin Millwood (5), Frank Francisco (3)
Pitches-Strikes - Kevin Millwood 104-60, Darren O'Day 12-6, C.J. Wilson 21-16, Frank Francisco 31-17
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Kevin Millwood 4-10
Batters Faced - Kevin Millwood 30, Darren O'Day 2, C.J. Wilson 4, Frank Francisco 6
Game Information
Attendance - 27142
Game Time - 3:17
Temperature - 98
Umpires - Home - Andy Fletcher, First Base - Greg Gibson, Second Base - Ted Barrett, Third Base - Tim McClelland