The Toronto Blue Jays scored twice in the ninth inning to take the series opener 6-5 against the Texas Rangers Tuesday night at Globe Life Park. The teams combined for five home runs but it was walks that played the biggest part of the Blue Jays victory. Closer Shawn Tolleson walked two in the ninth and surrendered a soft liner to left to Troy Tulowitzki that tied the score at 5-5. Toronto took the lead when pinch-runner Ezequiel Carrera scored on a third baseman Adrian Beltre’s throwing error to first on a slow hopper.
Pitching: Derek Holland gave up three homers, including a solo homer to Chris Colabello in the second, a two-run homer to Jose Bautista in the third, and a solo homer to leadoff the sixth. Holland allowed four runs on seven hits and a walk in six innings before Jake Diekman started the seventh.
Diekman allowed a single before recording an out and being replaced by Sam Dyson, who got a strikeout and foul out to end the threat and preserve the 5-4 lead. Keone Kela pitched a 1-2-3 eighth, retiring the heart of the Toronto order including Bautista, Edwin Encarnacion and a strikeout of Colabello. Closer Shawn Tolleson walked two in the ninth before Tulowitzki tied it at 5-5 with a soft liner to shallow left. The Jays took a 6-5 lead when third baseman Adrian Beltre’s throw to first on a slow hopper pulled Mitch Moreland off first. Spencer Patton replaced Tolleson and recorded the final out.
Hitting: Texas took a 1-0 lead in the first when Shin-Soo Choo scored on Adrian Beltre’s triple off the top of the wall in right. Rougned Odor’s solo homer in the second regained the lead for the Rangers. After the Blue Jays reclaimed the lead with two runs in the top of the third, Delino DeShields tied it with a solo homer, the second of his career. Back to back doubles in the fourth by Elvis Andrus and Odor made it 4-3 and Ryan Strausborger’s sacrifice fly to right scored Odor, who slid belly first under the tag to make it 5-3. Texas had ample chances to add to its lead in the seventh and eighth innings but came up empty. A double steal by Will Venable and Delino DeShields gave the Rangers runners at second and third with one out but Choo was caught looking on a high strike and Prince Fielder grounded out to end the inning. They had the bases loaded in the eighth after singles by Mitch Moreland, Andrus and Bobby Wilson but Venable grounded out.
Notable: Odor left the game with broken fingernail on the middle finger of his right hand before the seventh inning. An x-ray of the finger was negative ... Fielder went 0 for 5 for the first time in 2015.
Stefan Stevenson, 817-390-7760