W – Kometani (4-2)
SV – Littleton (1)
HR – Cruz (18), Davis (2), Meyer (1)
31-27, 2.5 GU
Kason Gabbard did a solid job of throwing strikes [71 of his 106 pitches] on Monday afternoon, but he was burned by the longball. The southpaw gave up two home runs, helping lead to his five earned runs surrendered in seven innings. Gabbard yielded nine hits, walked two, and fanned seven.
RF Nelson Cruz (.337/.452/.718) continues to make it difficult for the Rangers to keep him out of the majors. Cruz smoked his third homer in as many days, giving him 18 on the season. He also walked twice.
Drew Meyer (1/4, HR) hit a solo homer while John Mayberry (2/4, 2B) singled and doubled.
First baseman Chris Davis (.233/.303/.433 in 30 Triple-A at-bats) was just 1-for-4 on the day, but he won the game with a grand slam in the bottom of the eighth inning.
Backstop Taylor Teagarden went 0-for-3 with a walk. His average has dipped all the way to .237 after going hitless in his last 21 at-bats.
Kea Kometani earned the win and Wes Littleton got credit for the save. Both pitchers chipped in with one perfect inning of relief.
L – Diamond (1-1)
HR – Murphy (8)
36-20, 8.0 GU
Thomas Diamond's third start back from Tommy John surgery was much like his first, as he allowed three runs in 4 1/3 innings on Monday. The righty threw 91 pitches, allowing four hits, walking four and fanning five.
Left fielder Steve Murphy (.290/.319/.520) was 1-for-4 with his ninth home run of the year. It was his fifth consecutive game with an extra-base hit.
Right fielder Dustin Majewski singled and walked.
Alfredo Gonzalez, Brandon Puffer, Trey Hodges and Andrew Laughter combined to hold the Natural scoreless for 4.2 innings. Laughter threw 12 pitches in his inning, eight of which were inside the strike zone. He allowed one hit and struck out one batter.
W – Falcon (4-2)
SV – Hamilton (6)
HR – Tracy (2)
33-24, 4.0 GB
The Blaze were able to overcome a rough start by lefty Zach Phillips with a come-from-behind victory.
Phillips gave up eight runs – six earned – on seven hits and four walks in 4.2 innings. He struck out three.
DH Chad Tracy had his biggest day of the year, going 3-for-4 with a home run and four runs batted in.
Manny Pina (2/4, 2B), Mauro Gomez (2/4, 2B) and John Whittleman (1/5, 2B) all hit doubles.
Julio Borbon and Jose Vallejo continued to keep pace with each other. Both players singled twice in five at-bats while stealing their 22nd base.
Relievers Josh Giles, Ryan Falcon and Clayton Hamilton threw up 4.1 innings worth of zeros to assist in the comeback. Falcon won his fourth game of the year while Hamilton got his sixth save.
W – Gomez (8-1)
SV – Turner (1)
HR – Gac (16)
39-14, 6.5 GU
With a 2.76 ERA on the season, Kennil Gomez hasn't needed much luck to rack up eight wins in nine decisions. But he needed a little support to get that eighth win on Monday, as the 20-year-old gave up six runs (five earned) in five innings.
Ian Gac (.329/.445/.676) helped support his pitcher by going 2-for-3 with a home run, a walk, and four RBI. It was Gac's 16th home run of the season.
Jonathan Greene (2/4, 3B) and Jose Felix (2/3, 2B) had the team's other two extra-base hits.
Right fielder Mitch Moreland (.335/.378/.534) extended his hitting streak to 12 games with three singles in four at-bats.
Moreland has hit safely in 20 of his last 21 games. In the one hitless contest, he was 0-for-1 with three walks.
Second baseman Renny Osuna raised his average to .351 with two singles in four trips.
The game initially delayed because of lightning in the top of the seventh inning before being called due to rain.
L – Peralta (0-1)
HR – Alfonzo (1)
1-1, 1.0 GB
Starting pitcher Anyenil Mendoza spread out eight baserunners [six hits, two HBP] through three innings, but he managed to allow just one run. The right-hander struck out two without walking a batter.
Leadoff hitter and left fielder Edward Alfonzo was 2-for-6 with a two-run homer, his first of the young season.
Catcher Tomas Telis, arguably the most talented position player signed by the Rangers on the international market last summer, went 2-for-4 with a triple and a walk.
Third baseman Emmanuel Solis singled once in five at-bats.
Alejandro Selen, who hit a solid .277/.372/.361 in the DSL last year, singled and doubled in five trips.
Righty Isidro Garcia tossed three shutout innings, giving up three hits. He walked one and struck out one.
Six-foot-four hurler Denny Peralta got the loss and the blown save, but he also pitched well, surrendering one run on four hits in 3 1/3 frames. He walked one and punched out three.
L – Alvarez (0-1)
HR – Pimentel (1)
1-1, 1.0 GB
Three-hole hitter and left fielder Guillermo Pimentel went 1-for-2 with two walks and four runs scored in Saturday's season opener. On Monday, the 18-year-old was 2-for-4 with a homer, a walk, and four RBI.
CF Ramon Mota (2/3, 2B, 2 BB), C Juvenal Lara (2/4, 2B, BB) and 1B Julio Gonzalez (1/5, 2B, BB) all doubled.
Starter Melvin Bryan, who spent some time with the AZL Rangers last summer, allowed three unearned runs in two innings pitched. He gave up one hit and walked three.
The Rangers had 11 errors in the game. Third baseman Wilson Ventura had four errors, Pimentel had three and Lara had three passed balls behind the plate.
Eleven of the Astros' 17 runs were unearned.
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