Byrd, Loe power Rangers to win over TwinsAug 19, 2007 - 3:32 AM By Anthony Maggio PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer
MINNEAPOLIS (Ticker) - Kameron Loe thought there were five double plays on Saturday. It only seemed like that many.
The sinkerball pitcher won in his return from the disabled list and Marlon Byrd drove in a season-high four runs as the Texas Rangers blanked the Minnesota Twins, 5-0.
Loe (6-9), who was on the 15-day disabled list since August 4 with back stiffness, won for the first time in six starts and helped the Rangers snap a five-game road losing streak, thanks to five shutout innings and three double plays from the defense - all of the inning-ending variety.
"Maybe that's why it seemed so big," Loe said. "That's awesome, that's huge. We played good ball all around."
Byrd hit a two-run blast off Twins starter Boof Bonser in the fourth inning and was credited with two more RBI on an infield single in the fifth. After going 0-for-5 with a 10th inning-strikeout when two runners were on base on Friday, it was a feel-good performance.
"Different feel from last night," Byrd said. "Somebody needs to hit behind Michael Young and be able to get him pitches. If they are not giving him pitches, we're going to struggle on the offensive side. So I've got to go up there and put a little fear in the pitcher's heart."
Loe (6-9) appeared fearless and pain-free on the mound, working in and out of trouble but allowing only three hits to go with five walks and two strikeouts in five innings.
Mike Wood threw two scoreless innings and two relievers finished it off.
After scoring on three runs in its previous two games, the Rangers' offense got started early against Bonser (5-10).
Young led off the fourth with a walk and Byrd followed with his fifth homer of the season to left field.
Jarrod Saltalamacchia put the Rangers up, 3-0, by leading off the fifth inning with his second home run in two days. Frank Catalanotto singled and Young doubled with two outs before Byrd smacked a grounder up the middle.
Second basemen Alexi Casilla could not field ball cleanly and his throw was dropped by Justin Morneau, allowing Young to score from second ahead of Morneau's throw home. Bonser walked the next batter, but reliever Juan Rincon struck out Gerald Laird to end the fifth.
"These guys have been bouncing back a lot," Texas manager Ron Washington said. "It wasn't the first time they bounced back, won't be the last. We know what we've got offensively. The pitching was there tonight, and tonight the offense supported it."
For Bonser, it was another frustrating night. He has now gone 12 starts since his last win on June 10 against the Washington Nationals. The righthander gave up five runs on seven hits with three walks and two homers in 4 2/3 innings.
Minnesota is 2-10 in Bonser's last 12 outings, and he has an 0-8 record with a 5.64 ERA in that stretch. Bonser's last five starts have been even worse with an 0-4 record and a 6.67 ERA. He has walked seven and given up three home runs in his last two starts.
"Tonight, a couple of the balls went out of the ballpark where he got too much of the plate with them," Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said.
"They hit a couple good pitches off him and was a little unlucky there (in the fifth inning). But obviously he wasn't good enough to win a baseball game. He's throwing the ball fine. We can't seem to score runs for him and a night like tonight, he just had a bad night."
Loe, on the other hand, bounced back from his own series of rough outings prior to landing on the disabled list. The righthander was 0-3 in his previous four starts with a 7.84 ERA and won for the first time since July 1.
"I hadn't really lost confidence," Loe said. "I definitely know that I can give us quality innings and go deep into games. But yeah, this is something to build off."
Minnesota had plenty of chances, but couldn't come up with any clutch hits against Loe, stranding four runners in scoring position in the first five innings.
Jason Kubel had two hits for Minnesota (61-61), which saw its three-game winning streak come to an end and trails the Cleveland Indians (67-54) by 6 1/2 games in the American League Central.
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
- - - - - - - - - - - -
TEXAS 0 0 0 2 3 0 0 0 0 5 8 0
MINNESOTA 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 8 0 (FINAL)
BATTERIES: TEX - KAMERON LOE, MIKE WOOD (6TH), FRANK FRANCISCO (8TH), JOAQUIN
BENOIT (9TH) AND GERALD LAIRD
MIN - BOOF BONSER, JUAN RINCON (5TH), CARMEN CALI (9TH)
AND JOE MA
Aug 18 10:24 PM
AT MINNESOTA - SCORING UPDATE
SINGLE BY MARLON BYRD SCORED FRANK CATALANOTTO AND MICHAEL
SITUATION: 3 RUNS IN, M BYRD ON FIRST, 2 OUT
CURRENT SCORE: TEXAS 5
MINNESOTA 0 TOP, 5TH
DUE UP FOR TEXAS: J BOTTS (.208, 0-FOR-2)
Rangers vs. TwinsAug 18 8:56 PM
AT MINNESOTA - SCORING UPDATE
SOLO HOME RUN BY JARROD SALTALAMACCHIA (2) TO RIGHT WITH 0
OUT IN THE 5TH OFF BOOF BONSER.
CURRENT SCORE: TEXAS 3, MINNESOTA 0
DUE UP FOR TEXAS: R VAZQUEZ (.236, 0-FOR-1)
Rangers vs. TwinsAug 18 8:49 PM
AT MINNESOTA - SCORING UPDATE
TWO-RUN HOME RUN BY MARLON BYRD (5) TO LEFT WITH 0 OUT IN
THE 4TH OFF BOOF BONSER SCORED MICHAEL YOUNG.
CURRENT SCORE: TEXAS 2, MINNESOTA 0
DUE UP FOR TEXAS: J BOTTS (.212, 0-FOR-1)
Rangers vs. TwinsAug 18 8:37 PM
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