C.J. Cron drove in all five of the Los Angeles Angels’ runs Friday, all with two outs, and the Texas Rangers’ offense struggled again with runners in scoring position in a 5-2 loss to open a three-game series at Angel Stadium.
Martin Perez allowed three runs in six innings, and Luke Jackson allowed two more in the seventh in his major league debut.
The loss, coupled with a Houston win, cost the Rangers a game in the American League West. The Astros lead by three games. The Rangers’ lead for the second wild card held at 1 1/2 games as Minnesota lost to Houston.
Pitching: Perez was foiled by an inability to record the third out of two innings. … He had two outs in the third, but Mike Trout singled and Albert Pujols walked to load the bases. Cron followed with a soft liner to center field that scored the game’s first two runs. … Cron got Perez again in the fifth, this time with a two-out triple after a walk to Pujols. … Perez allows three runs on five hits in six innings. … Jackson replaced Perez to start the seventh to make his major league debut and got TCU ex Taylor Featherston to start the inning. Kole Calhoun, though, reached on an hit into the infield shift, and Trout followed with a walk. After Pujols flied out, Cron again struck with two outs. His double scored two more runs.
Hitting: The Rangers’ woes with runners in scoring position stretched into a third game after going 1 for 22 in their two wins at San Diego. … The Rangers had a runner in scoring position in each of the first three innings, including Delino DeShields at third with one out in the first, but didn’t score. … They finally scored in the sixth as Rougned Odor hit a sacrifice fly to score Prince Fielder, but Mitch Moreland was caught off second base for an inning-ending double play just after Fielder had crossed home. … Shin-Soo Choo ended the Rangers’ 0-for-19 skid with runners in scoring position with a two-out triple in the seventh to score Joey Gallo, who had walked. … Adrian Beltre, though, bounced into a fielder’s choice two batters later with Choo at third.
Notable: DeShields grounded into a double play in the fifth, the first GIDP of his career. He lined into a double play in the ninth.