Josh Hamilton was greeted like a returning hero by Rangers fans and then responded by belting the first pitch he saw with a double to the right field corner Thursday night. But Hamilton’s first extra-base hit of the season was about all the 34,085 in attendance at Globe Life Park has to cheer. The Red Sox took a 2-0 lead off starter Nick Martinez and then jumped on Sam Freeman for three more in the eighth to win the series opener 5-1.
Pitching: Nick Martinez skirted with trouble through seven innings but left trailing just 2-0. He got out of trouble with three doubles plays, including two that ended the second and fifth innings. The Red Sox collected nine hits and two walks and scored runs in the fifth and sixth. Blake Swihart singled to lead off the fifth and scored on on Mookie Betts single to left. Hanley Ramirez led off the sixth with a homer to make it 2-0. Tanner Scheppers pitched the eighth and erased a lead-off single with a 6-4-3 double play but was replaced by Sam Freeman after issuing a walk. Freeman failed to get the final out, instead allowing two hits, a hit batter, and a walk as the Red Sox increased their lead with three more runs.
Hitting: Texas was held to one hit — Josh Hamilton’s second-inning double — through the first five innings before Shin-Soo Choo singled in the sixth. In the eighth, the Rangers started a two-out rally when Robinson Chirinos walked and Delino DeShields singled but Choo was called out on strikes to end the inning. In the ninth, Adrian Beltre doubled with one out and scored on Hamilton’s single to right. It’s Hamilton’s first RBI of the season and his first multi-hit game.
Notable: Josh Hamilton received an overwhelmingly supportive ovation as he approached the plate for his first at-bat at Globe Life Park in the second inning. Hamilton promptly doubled to the right field corner on the first pitch for his first extra-base hit of the season.
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Stefan Stevenson, 817-390-7760