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Texas at Atlanta

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Texas (37-34) «0100400016120
Atlanta (39-32)000101000253

Rangers 6, Braves 2

CBSSports.com wire reports
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ATLANTA -- The Texas Rangers were swept in their first series at Turner Field eight years ago, so they played like a different team in their return to Atlanta.

"The Texas Globetrotters?" second baseman Ian Kinsler asked. "Is that what we are now?"

The Rangers made some fancy defensive plays and Josh Hamilton had four hits, including a two-run homer, to beat the Atlanta Braves 6-2 on Friday night and protect their lead in the AL West.

Colby Lewis and Nelson Cruz shook off slumps in the win as Texas, which began the night with a half-game lead over Seattle in the AL West, snapped a five-game losing streak.

Cruz, who had been 0 for 18 with 10 strikeouts in his last five games, drove in three runs with two doubles.

Lewis (6-7) recovered after two ugly losses in which he gave up a combined 15 runs on 17 hits in only 4 2/3 innings. The right-hander gave up two runs on five hits in 6 2/3 innings while matching his career high with 10 strikeouts.

The Rangers also won with defensive flash.

With two outs in the fifth, Lewis ran toward the first-base line to pick up a weak grounder by Jason Heyward. After making the scoop, Lewis made a backhanded flip of the ball from his glove to first baseman Young to throw out Heyward, who slammed down his helmet in disgust.

"That was just a crazy play," Kinsler said. "I don't know how he got it out. He's got a big pitcher's glove. It's not like the ball is coming out of there easy."

Lewis called the play "just a shot that you kind of take and it worked out. It turned out well."

Third baseman Adrian Beltre made a bid to challenge Lewis for the top defensive play of the game in the sixth inning. Sprinting toward left field with his back to the infield, Beltre made an over-the-shoulder catch of a foul pop-up hit by Eric Hinske.

"I didn't think he had a chance," Kinsler said.

Rangers manager Ron Washington said his team needed the defense to shake its losing streak.

"You know you needed everything that happened and defense was a big part of it," Washington said.

"Beltre going down the line, I've never seen a third baseman go after a ball the way he did."

Washington said the scoop and flip by Lewis was about the pitcher's creativity.

"You don't teach that," Washington said.

The Rangers made another unusual play in the seventh. With Jordan Schafer on first base and two outs, Heyward hit a grounder to Beltre, who threw toward second base in hopes of forcing Schafer. Kinsler was late covering the bad and caught the throw behind Schafer on the first-base side of the bad.

Unable to beat Schafer to second base, Kinsler instead threw out Heyward at first base.

Hamilton drove in three runs, including a run-scoring single in the ninth.

"I felt good at the plate," Hamilton said. "I felt like I had a plan for what they were going to do. ... I felt I was in a good place."

Lewis gave up homers to Brian McCann in the fourth and Freddie Freeman in the sixth.

Right-hander Randall Delgado (0-1), recalled from Double-A Mississippi, gave up seven hits and four runs, three earned. He was knocked out without recording an out in the Rangers' four-run fifth, when Hamilton hit his fifth homer.

"It's a different world," Delgado said. "At the same time, it's the same game, baseball."

Delgado, 21, made his major league debut after the Braves placed right-hander Tommy Hanson on the 15-day disabled list with inflammation in his right shoulder.

Cruz snapped his hitless streak with his second-inning double to right field to drive in Michael Young, who also reached on a double. Cruz had a two-run double off Cristhian Martinez in the fifth.

The Braves were without third baseman Chipper Jones, who left Thursday night's game against the Mets with a strained adductor muscle in his right leg.

Manager Fredi Gonzalez said Jones felt discomfort when he took swings in the batting cage on Friday and may return Sunday or Monday.

"I'm not going to push him," Gonzalez said.

Neftali Feliz, acquired by the Rangers from Atlanta in the seven-player trade in 2007 that sent Mark Teixeira to the Braves, pitched a perfect ninth.

Notes

Lewis had 10 strikeouts for the second time this season and eighth time in his career. ... The Rangers were swept by the Braves in three games in Atlanta in 2003 in their only previous series at Turner Field. The teams are playing for the first time since the Rangers won two of three at Texas on June 17-19, 2008. ... The Braves optioned INF Brandon Hicks to Triple-A Gwinnett. RHP Jairo Asencio, recalled from Gwinnett, gave up one run on three hits in two innings.

 
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
Texas

J. Hamilton
AB 5
R 1
H 4
HR 1
RBI 3
Texas

C. Lewis
IP 6.2
H 5
ER 2
BB 3
K 10
 
Texas Rangers
HittersABRHRBIBBSOLOBAVG
Ian Kinsler, 2B5110014 .233
Elvis Andrus, SS5110000 .275
Josh Hamilton, CF5143000 .302
Adrian Beltre, 3B5110013 .261
Michael Young, 1B4220101 .310
    Neftali Feliz, P0000000 .000
Nelson Cruz, LF-RF5023033 .225
Mitch Moreland, RF-1B4000105 .295
Yorvit Torrealba, C3010111 .254
Colby Lewis, P3000015 .000
    Arthur Rhodes, P1000010 .000
    Yoshinori Tateyama, P0000000 .000
    David Murphy, LF0000000 .242
Totals40612638  
Batting
2B - Michael Young (19, Delgado), Nelson Cruz 2 (9, Delgado, Cr. Martinez)
HR - Josh Hamilton (5, Delgado)
RBI - Josh Hamilton 3 (27), Nelson Cruz 3 (37)
Team LOB - 10
Fielding
DP - Young-Andrus
Texas Rangers
PitchersIPHRERBBSOHRERA
Colby Lewis (W,6-7) 6.25223102 4.80
Arthur Rhodes (H,6) 0.2000100 4.76
Yoshinori Tateyama (H,1) 0.2000000 4.15
Neftali Feliz 1000020 2.22
HBP - Conrad (by Colby Lewis)
Pitches-Strikes - Colby Lewis 117-71, Arthur Rhodes 11-6, Yoshinori Tateyama 5-3, Neftali Feliz 13-11
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Colby Lewis 3-7, Arthur Rhodes 1-1, Yoshinori Tateyama 1-0
Batters Faced - Colby Lewis 29, Arthur Rhodes 3, Yoshinori Tateyama 1, Neftali Feliz 3
Atlanta Braves
HittersABRHRBIBBSOLOBAVG
Jordan Schafer, CF3000120 .247
Dan Uggla, 2B4000011 .172
Jason Heyward, RF4010011 .220
Brian McCann, C3111110 .296
Freddie Freeman, 1B3111122 .268
Alex Gonzalez, SS3000121 .257
Eric Hinske, LF4010011 .257
Brooks Conrad, 3B3010001 .233
Randall Delgado, P2000013 .000
    Cristhian Martinez, P0000000 .250
    Scott Proctor, P0000000 .000
   a- Diory Hernandez, PH1000000 .280
    Jairo Asencio, P0000000 .000
   b- Joe Mather, PH1000010 .219
Totals31252412  
a-flied out for Proctor in the 7th
b-struck out for Asencio in the 9th
Batting
2B - Jason Heyward (5, Lewis), Brooks Conrad (3, Lewis)
HR - Brian McCann (10, Lewis), Freddie Freeman (7, Lewis)
RBI - Brian McCann (38), Freddie Freeman (26)
Team LOB - 7
Fielding
E - Brooks Conrad (1, Misplayed grounder), Alex Gonzalez (6, Throwing), Jason Heyward (3, Misplayed grounder)
Atlanta Braves
PitchersIPHRERBBSOHRERA
Randall Delgado (L,0-1) 4743221 6.75
Cristhian Martinez 2211020 3.67
Scott Proctor 1000010 2.19
Jairo Asencio 2311130 4.66
IBB - Young by Jairo Asencio
WP - Randall Delgado (1)
Pitches-Strikes - Randall Delgado 86-52, Cristhian Martinez 28-21, Scott Proctor 11-8, Jairo Asencio 33-20
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Randall Delgado 7-4, Cristhian Martinez 3-1, Scott Proctor 2-0, Jairo Asencio 3-0
Batters Faced - Randall Delgado 22, Cristhian Martinez 8, Scott Proctor 3, Jairo Asencio 10
Game Information
Attendance - 38810
Game Time - 2:57
Temperature - 71
Umpires - Home - Larry Vanover, First Base - Brian Gorman, Second Base - Cory Blaser, Third Base - Tony Randazzo