The Norman Transcript

May 6, 2013

All swept up

By Stephen Hawkins
The Associated Press

ARLINGTON, Texas — Yu Darvish struck out 14 and Adrian Beltre hit an RBI single with two outs in the ninth inning as the Texas Rangers beat Boston 4-3 Sunday, completing a three-game sweep and matching the Red Sox for the best record in the majors.

The Rangers, Red Sox and St. Louis all have 20-11 marks.

Beltre lined a hit to right-center off Clayton Mortensen (0-2) that sent home Elvis Andrus, who had reached on a two-out single and moved up on a wild pitch. The Red Sox then opted to intentionally walk Lance Berkman.

Darvish matched a career high for strikeouts and left after seven innings with the score tied. Rangers closer Joe Nathan (1-0), the third reliever, worked around a walk and a hit in the ninth.

While Darvish had 14 strikeouts for the second time this season, the right-hander from Japan allowed multiple homers in a game for only the second time in his 36 starts for the Rangers. David Ortiz and David Ross homered in the first two innings.

The game was 3-3 when Darvish threw the last of his career-high 127 pitches to end the seventh, denying him a chance at his sixth victory to equal the most in the majors. He did up his majors-best strikeout total to 72.

His other 14-strikeout game for Darvish came in his first start this season, when he retired the first 26 Houston batters and was within one out of a perfect game before giving up a single April 2. The last time an American League pitcher had multiple 14-K games in a season was 2000, when Pedro Martinez had three and Mike Mussina two.

Red Sox left-handed starter Jon Lester, with a 4-0 record, also got a no decision after seven strikeouts in six innings. Like Darvish, he was hurt by two home runs.

The Rangers got on the board in the fourth on Mitch Moreland’s fourth homer, an opposite-field shot that landed only a couple of rows into the left-field seats — and just inside the pole.

Nelson Cruz hit his seventh homer, a two-run shot to center after Beltre’s single, to tie the game at 3 in the sixth.

Ortiz extended the longest hitting streak in the majors to 25 games, including all 13 of his games this season for Boston, when he pulled a pitch deep into the right-field stands for a two-run shot in the first. An inning later, Ross homered on hanging breaking ball over the middle of the plate.

After going his first 37 2-3 innings this season without giving up a long ball, Darvish gave up homers in three consecutive innings.

Cardinals 10, Brewers 1: MILWAUKEE — Jaime Garcia put the Brewers and St. Louis’ sweep of Milwaukee under wraps.

He pitched eight innings and Allen Craig drove in four runs to lead the St. Louis Cardinals to a 10-1 win over Milwaukee and the franchise’s first four-game sweep of the Brewers.

“Early in the season, late in the season, it doesn’t matter when you get a series win like this one,” Cardinals catcher Yadier Molina said. “Everything went good this weekend. We pitched good and really hit the ball well.”

Matt Holliday also homered for the Cardinals, who have won six straight, their most since taking eight in a row from July 11-21, 2010. It was the first time the Cardinals have four in a row from the Brewers, who moved to the NL and have been in the Cardinals’ division since the 1998 season.

Garcia (4-1), who won his third straight game, gave up one run on eight hits. He had three strikeouts and only one walk.

“I felt really good out there,” he said. “I was able to keep the ball down and keep our team in the game.”

Marco Estrada (2-2) lasted 3 1-3 innings for the Brewers, who have lost five in a row. He gave up eight runs on six hits and had a career high six walks.

The Cardinals scored six runs in the second inning to take control of the game on three hits as St. Louis sent 10 men to the plate. Estrada was wild and loaded the bases with two walks and single.

Shane Robinson and Holliday forced in runs with walks before Craig lined a double to the left field corner to drive in three runs. Yadier Molina’s RBI single scored Craig.

Royals 6, White Sox 5: KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Alex Gordon hit an RBI single with two outs in the 10th and the Kansas City Royals, saved when Billy Butler sent the game into extra innings, rallied past the Chicago White Sox 6-5.

Butler’s two-out, two-run double in the ninth tied it for Kansas City.

Lorenzo Cain led off the 10th with his third hit and stole second with one out. With two outs, Chris Getz was intentionally walked and George Kottaras then walked on five pitches, loading the bases for Gordon.

Gordon singled on the first pitch from rookie Brian Omogrosso (0-1), who made his first appearance since being called up Wednesday.

Greg Holland (1-1) worked a perfect 10th.

Butler’s tying double scored pinch runner Chris Getz and George Kottaras. Addison Reed blew his first save in 18 opportunities dating to Aug. 25. He was 10 for 10 in save chances this season.

Alex Rios homered and drove in two runs and Alejandro De Aza contributed a two-run double for the White Sox.

Royals reliever Tim Collins started the seventh with a 3-1 lead, but allowed three runs on three hits without retiring a batter. In his past two outings, Collins has yielded five runs on seven hits and gotten only two outs.

Chicago scored four times in the seventh. Aaron Crow threw a wild pitch that let one run score and Rios hit his team-leading seventh home run.

Royals right-hander Wade Davis, who had allowed 15 runs on 20 hits and seven walks in 8 1-3 innings in losing his previous two starts, held the White Sox to one run on five hits in six innings.

Davis gave up a run in the third on Rios’ groundout with the bases loaded.

White Sox left-hander Jose Quintana held the Royals hitless for four innings before they scored three runs in the fifth. Miguel Tejada and Alcides Escobar had RBI singles and the other run scored on second baseman Jeff Keppinger’s error.

NOTES: White Sox RHP Jake Peavy will be skipped Monday, missing his second straight start with back spasms. LHP Chris Sale will start the series finale in Peavy’s place. The Royals will counter with RHP James Shields, a rematch of the season opener which Sale won 1-0. ... Tejada started his first game of the season at second base. He had started two games at third base and one at first base.