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Beltre's HR, four hits lead Rangers in rout over Astros

CBSSports.com wire reports
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HOUSTON -- Texas manager Ron Washington wasn't sure what to expect from a couple of reserves he started on Sunday to give his Nelson Cruz and Ian Kinsler a day off.

The veteran manager was pleasantly surprised.

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Leonys Martinand rookie Leury Garcia combined to get five hits, score six runs and drive in two as the Rangers completed a three-game sweep by romping past the Houston Astros 12-7.

Adrian Beltre's three-run homer was one of his four hits, and David Murphy and Martin also homered for Texas.

"The type of team that I have this year, guys have been getting opportunities to play a little more than I have in the past," Washington said. "So I think they're more prepared and more ready to go up there when there's opportunity for them to play and do the job."

He was particularly impressed with Garcia, who had three hits and scored four runs -- both career highs -- to become the first Texas rookie to record both since Jarrod Saltalamacchia in 2007.

"Leury Garcia was the one guy today that I didn't expect to make a whole lot of contact because he's the one guy that's in that lineup who hasn't been doing a whole lot of playing," Washington said. "He had a good game: scored four runs, got three hits, stole a bag, played good defense. That's what you like to have in extra guys."

Garcia was excited to contribute.

"It was awesome," he said. "I feel really good. I had a few days that I hadn't played but I was waiting for my time and I took advantage of it."

The Rangers set a season high for runs, and did it quickly. Martin led off the fifth with a home run and Beltre connected later in the inning for a 12-1 lead.

Beltre doubled twice and drove in four runs. He homered for the second straight day, hitting a drive that was originally called a double and changed to a homer after the umpires went to video review. Beltre connected off Edgar Gonzalez, signed by the Astros earlier in the day.

Beltre has heated up lately with 12 of his 23 RBI coming in the last 10 games. He's raised his average from .214 to .260 in that span.

"Outstanding. Certainly what we needed," Washington said of Beltre's day. "He's been swinging the bat well and that average is climbing and RBI are starting to pile up. He's my RBI guy, so I'm very happy."

Chris Carter hit a three-run homer for Houston, Brandon Barnes added a two-run shot and Jason Castro had a solo homer. The Astros have dropped 10 of 12.

At 10-28, the Astros are off to their worst 38-game start, according to STATS, breaking their 12-26 mark from 1967 and 1975.

Murphy's two-run homer came in a four-run third. Beltre hit an RBI double as the Rangers added three in the fourth, and Texas broke it open in the fifth.

Nick Tepesch (3-3) rebounded from two rough starts to allow four hits and one run in six innings, striking out a career-high eight.

The Rangers jumped on starter Jordan Lyles (1-1) for 11 hits and a career-high eight runs in four innings. He also balked home a run.

"I wasn't throwing the ball over the plate," he said. "I was missing by a little bit and missing by a lot, they hit me around pretty good, then I walked some guys, and they hit me around some more. The loss is definitely on my shoulders, and I've got to do a better job of competing."

Lyles was replaced by Gonzalez and he didn't fare much better, allowing six hits and four runs in four innings.

Lance Berkman extended his hitting streak at Minute Maid Park to 18 games with an RBI double in the first inning to make it 1-0.

Garcia singled to start the third, stole second base and advanced to third on an error by catcher Castro. Garcia scored on a groundout by Berkman.

Beltre doubled and scored on a one-out single by Craig Gentry in the third. Murphy then launched a 91 mph fastball into the seats in right field to extend the lead to 5-0.

Tepesch had allowed 11 runs and 14 hits in his last two games -- both losses -- but he was in control from the beginning on Sunday.

Carlos Pena singled with one out in the first inning, and the Astros didn't get another hit until Castro's homer with two outs in the fourth inning made it 8-1.

Martin opened the fifth with a towering homer to right field before back-to-back singles by Andrus and Garcia. Beltre connected on his homer and feel to his knee at the end of the swing before hustling to his feet. It was initially ruled a double, but a video review showed the ball hit on the center field wall above the yellow line and it was changed.

Castro had an RBI single in the eighth before Carter hit his team-leading ninth homer to the Crawford Boxes in left field off Derek Lowe to cut the lead to 12-5.

Barnes got Houston within 12-7 with a two-run homer in the ninth.

Notes

  • Bud Norris pitches for Houston when the Astros open a three-game series at Detroit against Anibal Sanchez on Monday.
  • The Rangers travel to Oakland where Texas RHP Justin Grimm opposes A.J. Griffin.
  • Houston designated RHP Philip Humber for assignment on Sunday and signed Gonzalez.
  • Texas LHP Martin Perez was activated from the 15-day disabled list and optioned to Double-A Frisco. He had been on the disabled list since March 31, retroactive to March 22, after breaking his left wrist.
  • The Astros struck out 12 times, giving them a big league-leading total of 381.
 
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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Adrian Beltre connects for a three-run homer and doubles twice to lead the Rangers past the Astros. (Getty Images)
Adrian Beltre connects for a three-run homer and doubles twice to lead the Rangers past the Astros. (Getty Images)

Players of the Game
Houston

J. Castro
AB 4
R 2
H 2
HR 1
RBI 2
Texas

A. Beltre
AB 5
R 2
H 4
HR 1
RBI 4
 
Texas Rangers
HittersABRHRBIBBSOLOBAVG
Elvis Andrus, SS4230201 .270
Leury Garcia, 2B6431014 .286
Lance Berkman, DH5012003 .298
Adrian Beltre, 3B5244000 .260
    Jeff Baker, 3B0000000 .351
Mitch Moreland, 1B4010113 .291
Craig Gentry, CF5111003 .235
David Murphy, LF4112100 .200
Robinson Chirinos, C4010123 .250
Leonys Martin, RF5221012 .271
Totals4212171155  
Batting
2B - Lance Berkman (9, Lyles), Adrian Beltre 2 (8, Lyles, Lyles), Robinson Chirinos (1, Lyles)
HR - Adrian Beltre (8, E. Gonzalez), David Murphy (4, Lyles), Leonys Martin (2, E. Gonzalez)
RBI - Leury Garcia (1), Lance Berkman 2 (18), Adrian Beltre 4 (23), Craig Gentry (7), David Murphy 2 (11), Leonys Martin (5)
2-OUT RBI - Craig Gentry (5), David Murphy 2 (7)
SB - Leury Garcia (1, 3rd base off Lyles/Castro)
Team LOB - 8
Fielding
E - Adrian Beltre (4, Throwing)
Texas Rangers
PitchersIPHRERBBSOHRERA
Nick Tepesch (W,3-3) 6411181 4.03
Michael Kirkman 1000020 7.36
Derek Lowe 1344111 8.03
Joe Ortiz 1222011 4.00
Pitches-Strikes - Nick Tepesch 84-55, Michael Kirkman 20-12, Derek Lowe 31-20, Joe Ortiz 14-10
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Nick Tepesch 7-4, Michael Kirkman 1-0, Derek Lowe 1-1, Joe Ortiz 2-0
Batters Faced - Nick Tepesch 24, Michael Kirkman 3, Derek Lowe 7, Joe Ortiz 5
Houston Astros
HittersABRHRBIBBSOLOBAVG
Trevor Crowe, RF5010000 .200
Carlos Pena, DH3110111 .230
   a- Carlos Corporan, PH-DH1000010 .289
Jose Altuve, 2B3010001 .336
    Jimmy Paredes, 2B2110000 .182
Jason Castro, C4222012 .256
Chris Carter, 1B3113111 .228
J.D. Martinez, LF4000021 .203
Ronny Cedeno, SS4000022 .291
Matt Dominguez, 3B4110010 .264
Brandon Barnes, CF4112030 .322
Totals37797212  
a-struck out for Pena in the 9th
Batting
HR - Jason Castro (3, Tepesch), Chris Carter (9, Lowe), Brandon Barnes (2, Ortiz)
RBI - Jason Castro 2 (9), Chris Carter 3 (22), Brandon Barnes 2 (9)
2-OUT RBI - Jason Castro (5)
Team LOB - 5
Fielding
DP - Cedeno-Altuve-Carter, Cedeno-Carter
E - Jason Castro (2, Throwing)
Houston Astros
PitchersIPHRERBBSOHRERA
Jordan Lyles (L,1-1) 41188311 8.36
Edgar Gonzalez 4644142 8.25
Jose Veras 1000100 4.20
IBB - Murphy by Jordan Lyles
Pitches-Strikes - Jordan Lyles 93-52, Edgar Gonzalez 57-42, Jose Veras 13-7
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Jordan Lyles 9-2, Edgar Gonzalez 1-6
Batters Faced - Jordan Lyles 26, Edgar Gonzalez 18, Jose Veras 3
Game Information
Attendance - 19730
Game Time - 3:07
Temperature - 81
Umpires - Home - Eric Cooper, First Base - Paul Schrieber, Second Base - Chad Fairchild, Third Base - Jeff Kellogg