Angels
Rangers
7 - 11 Final
  for this game

Rangers down Angels in opener of pivotal series

Aug 27, 2011 - 5:35 AM Arlington, TX (Sports Network) - Nelson Cruz homered twice and drove in six, David Murphy hit a grand slam, and the Rangers topped the Angels, 11-7, in the opener of a three-game series between the AL West's top two teams.

Texas' lead in the division had dwindled to two games entering Friday, as the Angels were riding a six-game winning streak and the Rangers had lost six of eight.

But Cruz and Murphy spearheaded an 18-hit attack to help Texas keep its advantage from shrinking further. Cruz had four hits and Murphy had three, and the 11 runs matched the total the Rangers scored during their recent four-game series against Boston.

"We definitely showed up tonight. We took a few days of frustration out and played a great game," Murphy said. "It's going to be a battle all weekend long."

Derek Holland (12-5) limited Los Angeles to one run in 6 2/3 innings to pick up the win.

Angels starter Dan Haren (13-7) lasted just 4 1/3 innings, his shortest outing in more than a month. He allowed seven runs -- six earned -- on 11 hits and a walk, and the LA offense couldn't make up the deficit with a few late rallies.

"We can score runs, but obviously it's not the type of game we want to play, not the type of game our team is set up for," said Angels manager Mike Scioscia.

Cruz put Texas in front with a two-run double in the second and a leadoff homer in the fourth, and the Rangers took control an inning later.

Michael Young began the Rangers' fifth with a single and reached second on Mike Napoli's batted ball, as Angels shortstop Erick Aybar failed to catch the ball on a force attempt. Cruz's one-out single loaded the bases for Murphy.

Haren was ahead in the count, 1-2, but left an 84 mph pitch up in the zone and Murphy hammered it down the right-field line for his second career slam.

Jerome Williams took over for Haren and got the Angels out of the inning, but gave up four runs in the sixth. Young and Napoli singled ahead of Mitch Moreland's RBI double, and Cruz followed with his second homer of the game to make it 11-0.

Cruz's outburst ended his recent offensive dry spell. Over his previous nine games, he batted 6-for-35 with one RBI.

The Angels got back into the game in the late innings -- Bobby Wilson singled in Vernon Wells in the seventh to chase Holland, and they plated four runs against Yoshinori Tateyama in the eighth.

Singles by Howie Kendrick, Mike Trout and Mark Trumbo scored one, and Russell Branyan followed with a homer to right. Kendrick hit a two-run blast off Mark Lowe in the ninth, but it came with two away and Lowe fanned Trout to end the game.

Game Notes

The Rangers improved to 2-3 on their 10-game homestand...Angels pitchers Ervin Santana and Jered Weaver are set to start on three days' rest for the remaining games of the series. Santana is scheduled to pitch Saturday, four days after he pitched eight innings in a victory against the White Sox. Weaver will follow Sunday, four days after shutting the White Sox out for seven innings...The Angels' six-game win streak was their longest of the season.






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  • Howie Kendrick two-out, two-run Home Run (12) to center scored Bobby Abreu. Mike Trout due up.

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  • Erick Aybar grounded out pitcher to first to end the inning.

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  • Mark Trumbo single to center scored Howie Kendrick with one out. On the play, Mike Trout advances to second. Runners on first and second with Russell Branyan due up.

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  • Bobby Wilson single to center scored Vernon Wells with two out. Runner on first and Peter Bourjos due up.

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  • Nelson Cruz one-out, three-run Home Run 2 (28) to left center scored Mike Napoli and Mitch Moreland. David Murphy due up.

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  • Mitch Moreland double to left scored Michael Young with one out. On the play, Mike Napoli advances to third. Runners on second and third with Nelson Cruz due up.

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  • David Murphy one-out, Grand Slam (6) to right scored Michael Young, Mike Napoli and Nelson Cruz. Endy Chavez due up.

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  • Nelson Cruz lead-off Home Run (27) to center. David Murphy due up.

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  • Nelson Cruz double to center scored Mike Napoli and Mitch Moreland with none out. Runner on second and David Murphy due up.

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