ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) – David Price beat Texas for the first time in 10 career starts and the Tampa Bay Rays won 5-2 Sunday night, becoming the first team to take a series from the Rangers this season.
Ben Zobrist had three hits and an RBI, and Price earned his fourth victory in five starts. Tampa Bay touched up Texas lefty Derek Holland (2-2) for five extra-base hits.
Price (4-1) struck out six and walked one in 6 1-3 innings. He gave up two runs and six hits.
Fernando Rodney loaded the bases with two outs in the ninth, then jammed Ian Kinsler on a soft liner back to the mound for his seventh save.
The Rangers played most of the game without slugger Josh Hamilton, the American League leader in home runs and RBIs He left in the third with back stiffness and is day to day.
Hamilton was injured while recording his 25th RBI on a single to center field in the first that scored Elvis Andrus. The outfielder winced as he ran back to the dugout after being forced out on a fielder’s choice on Adrian Beltre’s grounder. He was slow to come out on the field for the start of the second and stayed in the dugout for the start of the third.
Rangers manager Ron Washington was ejected on his 60th birthday.
Tampa Bay took two of three in Texas, marking the first loss in seven series this season for the Rangers, who entered the game 13-1-1 in their last 15 series at home. They had won a team-record 12 consecutive series dating to last season.
Hamilton’s departure left a hole in the lineup against Price, who entered 0-6 with a 5.30 ERA against the Rangers — including two starts in the AL division series.
The Rangers put runners on second and third with one out in the fifth but managed to score only Yorvit Torrealba on Andrus’ groundout to second. David Murphy, who replaced Hamilton, struck out to end the threat.
Murphy fanned three times in three at-bats.
Zobrist, who was 3 for 4 with a double and a triple, was one of five Rays with RBIs. Jeff Keppinger, Luke Scott, Sean Rodriguez and Desmond Jennings — whose triple in the seventh scored the team’s fifth run — all had run-producing hits against Holland, who turned in his second straight ineffective start.
Tampa Bay knocked around the left-hander for six hits — four for extra bases — and four runs in the second and third.
Zobrist led off the second with a triple and was followed by run-scoring hits from Keppinger and Scott and a sacrifice fly by Rodriguez that scored B.J. Upton.
Holland allowed five runs and nine hits in seven innings, striking out eight. He walked Carlos Pena to start the third and gave up a run-scoring double to Zobrist.
NOTES: Washington was ejected at the end of the seventh by plate umpire Dan Bellino for arguing a called third strike on Kinsler. … Andrus reached base for the 18th consecutive game with a walk in the first. … Jennings extended his hitting streak to 11 games. … Texas DH Michael Young is 3 for 23 in his last six games. . Evan Longoria is hitting .550 with runners in scoring position (11 for 20). … Japanese media covering the Rangers and pitcher Yu Darvish presented Washington with a cake for his 60th birthday, a significant year in Japanese culture that also called for a Kanreki celebration, in which the birthday celebrant dons a red vest and a flat red hat that resembles a chef’s hat.
(Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)