The Norman Transcript

National Sports

September 30, 2013

Still alive: Rangers force Wild Cardtiebreaker

(Continued)

ARLINGTON, Texas —

With a chance to get back in the postseason for the fourth year in a row, they will get back Nelson Cruz. The All-Star slugger on Sunday completed his 50-game suspension that followed Major League Baseball’s investigation of the Biogenesis anti-aging clinic, which was accused of distributing banned performance-enhancing drugs.

General manager Jon Daniels said Cruz, who has been playing in the instructional league in Arizona the past two weeks, will be activated for Monday’s game. The Rangers were 29-21 without Cruz, who has 27 homers and 76 RBIs this season.

“I’ll have a chance tomorrow to be with me teammates and do the thing I love the most, play baseball,” said Cruz, who went 9 for 27 with five doubles, a homer and nine RBIs in eight games in Arizona. “The guys are excited. I’m excited.”

Asked whether he expected to play Monday, Cruz responded, “I think so.”

The Angels (78-84) finished with a losing record for only the second time in 10 seasons after being swept in a four-game series at Texas for the first time since June 1978.

“You have to tip your cap to those guys. They played well and stayed alive,” Angels manager Mike Scioscia said. “Our guys played as well as they could. It would have been nice to come in here and get some wins. .. I’m disappointed, but there’s nothing to be ashamed about the way we went after them. Those guys brought their game up a notch, and we’re going home.”

Neal Cotts (8-3) replaced Darvish in the sixth and allowed the tying hit, but struck out Howie Kendrick for the inning-ending out with runners on first and third.

Robbie Ross, Tanner Scheppers and Joe Nathan each pitched a scoreless inning after that.

When the Rangers started their game, Tampa Bay already led 7-0 at Toronto. Then Mike Trout homered to put the Angels up 1-0.

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