The Norman Transcript

National Sports

April 4, 2013

Rangers shut down Astros to win series

HOUSTON — A day after watching Yu Darvish come within one out of a perfect game, Alexi Ogando was determined to pitch well to help the Texas Rangers wrap up the three game series against Houston with a win.

Ogando got things started well and four Texas relievers finished it off to shut out the Astros again, combining for a five-hitter in the Rangers’ 4-0 win over the Astros on Wednesday.

“It was a spectacular game, and it certainly motivated me to pitch well today,” Ogando said in Spanish through a translator.

Lance Berkman doubled in a run for the Rangers a day after they blanked Houston 7-0 behind Darvish’s nearly historic gem.

It is the first time the Rangers have pitched consecutive shutouts since they had three straight in July 2011.

Ogando (1-0) allowed four hits with a career-high 10 strikeouts in 6 1-3 innings. The young and inexperienced Astros have struck out 43 times in their first three games.

“Ogando is known for striking folks out,” Texas manager Ron Washington said. “He had a good fastball, he has a tremendous slider and now he’s got a changeup and a curveball to go with all of that.”

It’s the most strikeouts a pitching staff has combined for in the first three games of a season in major league history, and the most since Cleveland fanned 42 in the first three of the 1966 season.

“Yesterday, it was more about their guy, and today it was more about our guys,” Houston manager Bo Porter said when asked about the strikeouts. “We just had our guys expanding the zone way too often. We need to make an adjustment and do a better job. The fastballs that we had an opportunity to do something with, we either fouled them off or didn’t get them (in play).”

The Rangers are also the fourth team in major league history since 1916 to start the season by striking out 10 or more batters in each of their first three games.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
National Sports
  • Indians trade Justin Masterson to Cardinals

    CLEVELAND — The Indians had little choice but to give up Justin Masterson. The trade doesn’t mean they’re going to surrender the season....

    July 31, 2014

  • Cowboys sign tackle Smith to 8-year extension

    OXNARD, Calif. — Tyron Smith has a new contract that will probably make him the most important blocker for the next Dallas quarterback after Tony Romo....

    July 31, 2014

  • Quarterback questions abound with big stars gone from SEC offenses

    MONTGOMERY, Ala. — Quarterback battles and signal-caller questions abound in the Southeastern Conference going into preseason camps around the league. Big names, not so much....

    July 31, 2014

  • Jones says Brent out of rehab, NFL question next

    OXNARD, Calif. — Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones says former defensive tackle Josh Brent is out of rehabilitation and could have his future with the NFL resolved before the team leaves training camp in California in two weeks....

    July 31, 2014

  • Ives to crew chief for Dale Jr. in 2015

    CHARLOTTE, N.C. — There was no shortage of candidates to replace Steve Letarte as Dale Earnhardt Jr.’s crew chief The list of applicants was long, but Hendrick Motorsports has always liked to groom its own talent. So the organization ...

    July 31, 2014

  • Gustafson wants Gordon’s team focused on Chase

    CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Jeff Gordon viewed his Brickyard 400 win as a turning point for his race team. Confidence had been building with every strong run, but his victory at Indianapolis Motor Speedway pushed his crew to another level. It was ...

    July 31, 2014

  • Mercury not thinking streak

    Brittney Griner and the Phoenix Mercury are closing in on one of the greatest records in WNBA history, the Los Angeles Sparks’ 18-game winning streak. To equal that mark, the Mercury need to win two more games, starting with defending ...

    July 31, 2014

  • Hamlin crew chief out 6 races

    CHARLOTTE, N.C. — NASCAR suspended Denny Hamlin’s crew chief and car chief on Tuesday for six races because the Joe Gibbs Racing entry failed inspection following his third-place finish at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Darian Grubb and ...

    July 30, 2014

  • Bell focuses on every facet of his game

    LATROBE, Pa. — Le’Veon Bell kept watching the tape over and over, equal parts pleased and puzzled by what he saw....

    July 30, 2014

  • Sam factor may ready Rams for sensitivity class

    ST. LOUIS — To guard against another bullying scandal, NFL teams are holding sensitivity sessions during training camp....

    July 30, 2014