The Rangers rallied for four runs in the seventh inning to take the finale against the Blue Jays 7-6 Sunday afternoon in a game that featured two bench-clearing clashes.
Pitching: Cesar Ramos pitched out of trouble through the first five innings and left with the game tied at 1-1. The Blue Jays took a 1-0 lead in the second when Edwin Encarnacion led off with a double and scored on Michael Saunders’ two-out single to left. Ramos had runners at second with one out or less in the third, fourth and fifth innings but held the Jays to a run. In the fifth, Josh Donaldson led off with a double and Ramos walked two to load the bases with one out. Andrew Faulkner relieved him and induced Justin Smoak to ground into a 4-6-3 double play to preserve the 1-1 tie. Ramos allowed a run on seven hits and two walks in 4 1/3 innings.
The Jays scored four times in the sixth to take a 5-2 lead. Tulowitzki singled and Saunders reached on a fielding error by second baseman Rougned Odor. Tom Wilhelmsen replaced Faulkner and had the bases loaded with one out after Darwin Barney singled for a bunt when Odor was late covering first to load the bases. A run scored on a grounder to short in which Elvis Andrus failed to glove cleanly and was only able to get the out at second. Jose Bautista’s double to deep center cleared the bases to put the Jays up 5-2. Wilhelmsen had more trouble in the seventh. He left with the bases loaded and no outs after a double, single and a walk. Matt Bush replaced him and retired the side but a run scored on a sac-fly to center to push the Jays’ lead back up to 6-3.
Hitting: Ryan Rua walked to start the third, stole second base and moved to third on Bryan Holaday’s sacrifice bunt. He scored to tie it at 1-1 on Ian Desmond’s double to the right-field corner. Desmond was thrown out at third trying to stretch it to a triple. He was initially safe but came off the bag and was tagged out. Rua reached on a fielder’s choice in the fifth and scored from first on Bryan Holaday’s two-out double to deep center field to give the Rangers a 2-1 lead. Adrian Beltre’s homer in the sixth pulled the Rangers back to within 5-3. Mitch Moreland doubled and scored in the seventh to draw Texas back to 6-4. Later in the inning with two outs, Holaday walked and Rougned Odor reached on an infield single before Desmond’s three-run homer gave the Rangers a 7-6 lead.
Notable: The Rangers begin a three-game series against the Athletics at 9:05 p.m. Monday. The six-game road trip finishes with three in Houston, beginning Friday night ... 41,327 was Sunday’s paid attendance.