Shin-Soo Choo had a three-run double Thursday, and Leonys Martin scored all three times he reached as the Rangers rallied for a 5-4 victory over Minnesota.
Rougned Odor drove home Martin with the go-ahead run on an eighth-inning sacrifice fly as the Rangers overcame a sluggish outing by rookie Nick Martinez. The bullpen, though, provided 3 1/3 scoreless innings, including 1 1/3 by Alexi Ogando (2-2) and the final two outs by Joakim Soria.
The Rangers scored three times in the second but were a strike away from not getting anything after loading the bases with no outs after singles by Alex Rios and Michael Choice and a walk to Leonys Martin.
Choo, though, came through after Samuel Deduno had retired Robinson Chirinos and Odor. Choo sliced a double into the left-field corner that cleared the bases for a 3-0 lead.
Martinez was lucky to not give any of it back in the Twins’ second after they loaded the bases with no outs. But he made a nice scoop home on a Josmil Pinto tapper in front of the plate, and got out of it as Eduardo Escobar lined into a double play.
But Martinez couldn’t slow the Twins in the third. He allowed four singles, two of them plating runs to cut the Rangers’ lead to 3-2. In the fifth, Josh Willingham smashed a two-out two-run homer 436 feet to give Minnesota the lead at 4-3.
The Rangers had a quick answer as Martin legged out a double with one out in the sixth and came home as the next batter, Chirinos dropped a single into left field for a 4-4 tie.
Martinez, who earned his first career victory Saturday, got two outs in the sixth before giving way to Ogando. Martinez allowed nine hits and two walks while throwing a career-high 108 pitches.
The game stayed tied until the eighth, when Martin opened with a double, went to third on a sacrifice bunt by Chirinos and scored on a sacrifice fly by Odor for a 5-4 lead.