for this game

Rangers beat Red Sox to take wild-card lead

Aug 16, 2009 - 10:57 PM By DAVID JIMENEZ Associated Press Writer

ARLINGTON, Texas(AP) -- Two days after being roughed up by the Red Sox, Frank Francisco helped the Texas Rangers knock Boston out of the wild-card lead.

Francisco bounced back from the worst outing of his career to pick up the save, Ian Kinsler homered and drove in two runs, and the Rangers passed the Red Sox in the AL wild-card race with a 4-3 win Sunday.

Francisco pitched a 1-2-3 ninth to give Texas a half-game lead over Boston. Less than 48 hours earlier, the closer was booed off the mound after being touched up for six runs in Boston's 8-4 victory Friday night.

"I believe in my teammates," Francisco said. "I feel like we have a chance to win when they're out there, and they feel the same way about me."

Kinsler, back in the lineup one day after he was hit by a pitch that ricocheted off his shoulder to his head, went deep for the second straight day and had an RBI single in the third that gave Texas a 3-1 lead.

Dustin Nippert (4-1) gave up two runs and six hits as the Rangers took two of three in the weekend series. The right-hander pitched 5 2-3 innings to defeat Boston on July 22, his only other win as a starter this season.

Texas, which also got a solo shot from Taylor Teagarden, went 7-2 against the Red Sox this season.

"Regardless of the name on the jersey, we have to go out and play good baseball," Kinsler said. "We've done well against them, but everything can change in a hurry."

David Ortiz and Dustin Pedroia went deep for the Red Sox. Junichi Tazawa (1-2) yielded 10 hits and four runs over five-plus innings in his second career start.

Pedroia's 10th homer in the seventh inning cut Texas' lead to 4-3 but the Rangers bullpen held on. With Red Sox runners on first and second in the eighth, C.J. Wilson struck out two consecutive batters to end the inning. Francisco then finished for his 16th save.

"We have tons of confidence in Frankie," Rangers third baseman Michael Young said. "He's been consistent for us all season. It was good to get him back on the mound."

Boston is closing out a run where it plays 15 of 19 on the road. The Red Sox are 7-9 in the stretch with three games left at Toronto.

The Red Sox were not discouraged despite losing a series to its closest playoff competitor.

"Who says we can't reel off 25 wins in September?" Victor Martinez said. "If you feel like you're defeated by losing a series, that's not the right attitude to have."

Ortiz homered leading off the second, his 17th of the season and second of the series.

Kinsler responded with his 25th homer in the bottom half and Texas took the lead for good with two runs in the third. Josh Hamilton drove in David Murphy with a double and scored on Kinsler's single.

The Rangers activated Kinsler on Friday after he missed 15 games with a strained left hamstring. The second baseman is 4 for 6 the past two games.

"The time off was a blessing in disguise," Washington said. "He's caught his second wind and it couldn't have come at a better time."

Brian Anderson's sacrifice fly cut Texas' lead to 3-2 in the fourth and Boston threatened again in the fifth, putting runners on first and second with two out. But Nippert struck out Mike Lowell to end the threat.

Lowell hurled his bat and helmet in frustration as the Red Sox struggled for a second straight game to get runners home. Boston was 0 for 5 with runners in scoring position and is 0 for 10 the past two games.

"They're pitching really well," Pedroia said. "They're locating the ball. Last year, there were a lot of balls out over the plate that you could drive."

NOTES: Boston RHP Tim Wakefield (back strain) made a rehab start for Triple-A Pawtucket Saturday night and allowed two runs and three hits in 3 2-3 innings. Red Sox manager Terry Francona said Wakefield had a noticeable limp coming off the mound in the second inning. "Everybody thinks he can pitch," Francona said. "We don't know if he can field his position." ... Washington said C Kevin Richardson, who was called up from the minors Saturday, will make his major league debut Monday night against Minnesota. ... Red Sox OF J.D. Drew (sore groin) missed his second straight game.








  • ** CONFIRMED **
    AL
    BOSTON 3
    TEXAS 4 FINAL

    Aug 16 5:10 PM
  • 35
    roots
    RUWTbot Added 35 roots (Close Finish)

    Red Sox 3, Rangers 4  Bot 7, 0 OutsAug 16 4:24 PM


  • AL
    AT TEXAS - SCORING UPDATE
    SOLO HOME RUN BY DUSTIN PEDROIA (10) TO LEFT CENTER WITH 1
    OUT IN THE 7TH OFF DOUG MATHIS.
    CURRENT SCORE: BOSTON 3, TEXAS 4
    DUE UP FOR BOSTON: V MARTINEZ (.288, 2-FOR-3)

    Red Sox 3, Rangers 4  Top 7, 0 OutsAug 16 4:21 PM


  • AL
    AT TEXAS - SCORING UPDATE
    SOLO HOME RUN BY TAYLOR TEAGARDEN (5) TO LEFT WITH 0 OUT IN
    THE 6TH OFF JUNICHI TAZAWA.
    CURRENT SCORE: BOSTON 2, TEXAS 4
    DUE UP FOR TEXAS: E ANDRUS (.268, 1-FOR-2)

    Red Sox 2, Rangers 4  Bot 6, 0 OutsAug 16 4:07 PM


  • AL
    AT TEXAS - SCORING UPDATE
    SACRIFICE FLY BY BRIAN ANDERSON SCORED DAVID ORTIZ
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, M LOWELL ON FIRST, 2 OUTS
    CURRENT SCORE: BOSTON 2
    TEXAS 3 TOP,4TH
    DUE UP FOR BOSTON: A GONZALEZ (.000, 0-FOR-1)

    Red Sox 2, Rangers 3  Top 4, 0 OutsAug 16 3:19 PM


  • AL
    AT TEXAS - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY IAN KINSLER SCORED JOSH HAMILTON
    SITUATION: 2 RUNS IN, I KINSLER ON FIRST, 2 OUTS
    CURRENT SCORE: BOSTON 1
    TEXAS 3 BOTTOM,3RD
    DUE UP FOR TEXAS: H BLALOCK (.243, 0-FOR-1)

    Red Sox 1, Rangers 3  Bot 3, 0 OutsAug 16 3:07 PM


  • AL
    AT TEXAS - SCORING UPDATE
    DOUBLE BY JOSH HAMILTON SCORED DAVID MURPHY
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, J HAMILTON ON SECOND, 2 OUTS
    CURRENT SCORE: BOSTON 1
    TEXAS 2 BOTTOM,3RD
    DUE UP FOR TEXAS: I KINSLER (.248, 1-FOR-1, HR, RBI)

    Red Sox 1, Rangers 2  Bot 3, 0 OutsAug 16 3:06 PM


  • AL
    AT TEXAS - SCORING UPDATE
    SOLO HOME RUN BY IAN KINSLER (25) TO LEFT CENTER WITH 1 OUT
    IN THE 2ND OFF JUNICHI TAZAWA.
    CURRENT SCORE: BOSTON 1, TEXAS 1
    DUE UP FOR TEXAS: H BLALOCK (.243, 23 HR, 56 RBI)

    Red Sox 1, Rangers 1  Bot 2, 0 OutsAug 16 2:43 PM


  • AL
    AT TEXAS - SCORING UPDATE
    SOLO HOME RUN BY DAVID ORTIZ (17) TO RIGHT CENTER WITH 0 OUT
    IN THE 2ND OFF DUSTIN NIPPERT.
    CURRENT SCORE: BOSTON 1, TEXAS 0
    DUE UP FOR BOSTON: M LOWELL (.299, 14 HR, 59 RBI)

    Red Sox 1, Rangers 0  Top 2, 0 OutsAug 16 2:32 PM