- Recap via SB Nation and Sports Network *
Arlington, TX (Sports Network) – The Texas Rangers pulled out a thrilling 8-7 victory over the Indians after Elvis Andrus scored from second base on an infield single in the 11th inning, spoiling Ubaldo Jimenez’s Cleveland debut.
The Rangers clawed back from a 7-2 deficit and sent the game to extra innings on Michael Young’s two-run homer off Chris Perez in the ninth inning.
“We had them right where we wanted. We had the lead in the ninth inning with our closer on the mound,” Indians manager Manny Acta said.
The AL West leaders continued to fight with two outs in the 11th. Andrus extended the inning with a bunt single, went to second on a Rafael Perez (4-2) wild pitch and never stopped running when Josh Hamilton chopped a bouncer to short.
Asdrubal Cabrera charged the ball and threw quickly to first, but Hamilton beat the throw with a head-first slide. Andrus sped around third and continued towards home, sliding in front of Matt LaPorta’s throw to punctuate the victory, Texas’ second straight.
“We battle, that’s who we are,” Hamilton said.
Neftali Feliz (1-2) earned the win in 1 2/3 scoreless innings of relief.
Jimenez wasn’t particularly sharp in his first American League start, but was in line for the win before Young roped a homer to straightaway center with two outs in the ninth. The trade deadline acquisition from Colorado was charged with five runs on seven hits and three walks in five-plus frames.
With two on in the first inning, Carlos Santana took Derek Holland deep to right for his 17th home run. The backstop added a two-run double in the second after Jason Kipnis produced a run-scoring groundout for a 6-1 lead.
Jimenez, meanwhile had an inauspicious start for his new team, surrendering a leadoff double to Ian Kinsler, allowing Kinsler to steal third, then throwing a wild pitch to surrender a run without recording an out.
The Rangers left runners on the corners, though, and the Tribe tacked on three more in their next at-bat when Jason Kipnis produced a run-scoring groundout and Santana lined a gapper to left to bring in two more.
Andrus and Mitch Moreland each knocked in a run in the second and third innings, respectively, around Shelley Duncan’s solo homer. Duncan was recalled from Triple-A Columbus hours before the game.
Mike Napoli homered off Jimenez to begin the sixth, and the right-hander was relieved after walking Moreland, who eventually scored on an Endy Chavez sacrifice fly to pull the Rangers within 7-5.
Holland did not allow an earned run in four of his July starts and was touched for 12 in two others. The latter Holland showed up Friday, as the lefty failed to get out of the second inning after yielding six runs — four earned — on five hits…The Rangers have won all five meetings between the teams this season.