A.J. Griffin flips the script Wednesday in Rangers' win
A.J. Griffin allowed three runs in six innings Wednesday, and the Texas Rangers’ bullpen tossed three scoreless innings in an 8-3 victory over the Los Angeles Angels.
Jeremy Jeffress and Jose Leclerc provided key set-up work in the seventh and eighth, as Jeffress retired for straight batters and Leclerc retired Mike Trout and Albert Pujols on four pitches to end the eighth.
Trout struck out on three straight pitches.
Mike Napoli, Elvis Andrus and Carlos Gomez hit solo home runs, and Joey Gallo had a two-run triple in the fifth that erased a 3-2 deficit. Rougned Odor put the game away with another two-run triple with two outs in the ninth.
How Rangers hitters fared: The home runs keep on coming for the Rangers, who connected for three more to boost their season total to an American League-best 16. Mike Napoli, Elvis Andrus and Carlos Gomez each hit a solo shot. ... Napoli and Andrus connected in the second for a 2-0 lead, and Gomez went deep in the seventh for a key insurance run. The homer also snapped an 0-for-16 skid. ... Joey Gallo had arguably the biggest hit, a two-run triple in the fifth for a 4-3 lead after Jonathan Lurcoy walked and Andrus singled to start the inning. Jurickson Profar followed with first hit of the season, a single, to score Gallo. ... Rougned Odor’s two-run triple with two outs in the ninth came after singles by Nomar Mazara and Napoli.
How Rangers pitchers fared: A.J. Griffin fared much better than he did in his 2017 debut last week, though it took him a few innings to find his groove. ... His only walk in six innings opened the second and turned into one of the Angels’ two runs in the inning. Mike Trout added the third and final run against Griffin with a solo homer to center field in the third. ... From there, though, Griffin allowed only one hit, a fourth-inning two-out single to C.J. Cron. Griffin also got Trout to foul out on the first pitch after a two-out Rougned Odor error in a 5-3 game. ... Jeremy Jeffress dialed up his best inning of the season, a 1-2-3 seventh, and then got the first out of the eighth. ... Alex Claudio entered and allowed a double to Kole Calhoun, so Jose Leclerc had to face Trout and Albert Pujols. All Leclerc did was strikeout Trout on three pitches and get Pujols to pop to center on the first pitch, and then finish off the win.