ARLINGTON (AP) – Seattle finally got offensive and snapped a five-game losing streak.
John Jaso hit a two-run homer early, then added an RBI single in the Mariners’ sixth-run eighth against two of Texas’ top two setup relievers. Seattle ended up matching its highest-scoring inning and game of the season in a 10-3 victory over the AL West-leading Rangers.
“It’s definitely good for us to be able to put up some runs, especially late in the game,’ said Kyle Seager, whose leadoff double in the eighth was his third hit. “Every once in a while you break out. Any time we can get everybody putting up some good ABs like that, it’s definitely positive.”
The first seven Seattle batters reached in the eighth, six hits and an error by shortstop Elvis Andrus, against Alexi Ogando and Mike Adams. Ichiro Suzuki then greeted the third Texas pitcher of the inning with a sacrifice fly.
I don’t think you’ll see again I have to out and get Mike and Ogando in the same inning,” Rangers manager Ron Washington said. “They put the ball in play, found holes.”
Jaso’s homer in the second put the Mariners ahead to stay. They scored twice with two outs in the fifth for a 4-1 lead after third baseman Adrian Beltre’s throwing error.
“Everybody was going up there with a plan. We had runners on all the bases and guys were going up there with a good approach,” Jaso said. “That is a good feeling right there and a good thing to see. It wasn’t any big swings, jam jobs or stuff like that. It was good hard hit balls on the ground.”
Josh Hamilton hit his majors-best 21st homer and drove in all three runs for the Rangers. The slugger was playing despite a sinus infection and upper respiratory problem that kept him out of the lineup the previous night, and even though he said before the game he felt no better.
“It’s Josh Hamilton,” Washington said. “He went out, he worked, he said he felt good enough to play. He played and he delivered three runs for us. But it just wasn’t enough, because we couldn’t get anything going.”
The Rangers (31-19) had a four-game winning streak ended by their most lopsided loss of the season. They still matched their best 50-game record in team history.
Vargas (6-4) allowed three runs and five hits over 6 2-3 innings. The left-hander struck out two and walked three.
That troubled fifth for Scott Feldman (0-3) and the Rangers came at the same time team president Nolan Ryan and general manager were announcing that Texas had reached a minor league deal with free agent right-hander Roy Oswalt.
Feldman was making his second start in place of injured Neftali Feliz since the closer-turned-starter went on the disabled list May 21 with right elbow inflammation. The big right-hander gave up four runs (two earned) with three strikeouts and three walks over 4 2-3 innings.
The injury to Feliz accelerated the Rangers’ interest in Oswalt, who they had been in contact since the offseason. They had watched him pitch at his home in Mississippi only days before Feliz got hurt.
“I don’t really have a reaction to it,” Feldman said. “I just work here, and do what I’m told to do here.”
Oswalt, who has pitched 11 major league seasons with Houston (2001-10) and Philadelphia (2010-11) is scheduled to travel to Texas on Thursday for a physical. If all goes well, he will then go to Triple-A Round Rock and on Saturday make the first of what will likely be several minor league starts.
Seattle got going in the fifth after a one-out double by light-hitting Brendan Ryan, the No. 9 batter hitting only .176 coming into the game, before Dustin Ackley walked. Alex Liddi then struck out, but both runners advanced on a double steal
The Rangers then intentionally walked Ichiro Suzuki to load the bases. Jesus Montero hit a grounder wide of third that Beltre fielded in the hole. But his throw sailed high over first baseman Mike Napoli’s head and out of play, allowing two runs.
Hamilton’s two-run homer came in the sixth off Vargas, bumping his majors-best RBIs total to 56 and cutting the gap to 4-3. His grounder in the first pushed home Andrus, who had doubled and advanced on a wild pitch.
Seattle’s big eighth came after Vargas had thrown his last pitch.
“I said `Come on. Let’s get some runs guys’. I proceeded to go put ice on,” Vargas said. “I got to take the ice off before the inning was over, so that’s a good thing.”
(© Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)
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