Kinsler, Moreland Homer As Rangers Beat Twins 9-3
ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) — Ian Kinsler hit a leadoff home run and Mitch Moreland launched a 463-foot shot, leading Ryan Dempster and the Texas Rangers over the Minnesota Twins 9-3 Saturday for their fourth straight win.
Kinsler homered in the first inning, hit a bases-loaded triple in the third that made it 9-0 and also singled.
Dempster allowed two runs in six innings and improved to 3-1 since he was acquired from the Cubs on July 31. He was 5-5 with Chicago.
After two shaky outings in his first three starts with Texas, Dempster has yielded just three runs in 14 innings over his last two starts. He struck out seven and walked two to beat the Twins for the second time this season.
The Rangers, who have outscored opponents 39-12 during their winning streak, got 14 hits. The only Texas player without one was Adrian Beltre, who went 0 for 4 a day after hitting for the cycle.
The AL West leaders have won eight of nine against the Twins this season.
Justin Morneau went 4 for 4 with a home run for Minnesota, which has lost five in a row and 14 of 16 overall.
Brian Duensing (3-9) gave up a career-worst nine runs in 2 1-3 innings.
Duensing was coming off one of his best outings of the season, having held Oakland to two runs in six innings on Monday. But the left-hander got off to a rough start when Kinsler drove his third pitch into the seats in left. It was Kinsler’s fifth leadoff home run this season and the 25th of his career.
Nelson Cruz added an RBI double in the first to make it 2-0.
Moreland’s three-run homer in the second inning was the third-longest shot at the Rangers’ stadium. Josh Hamilton hit the longest, a 490-foot drive in 2010.
Geovany Soto had an RBI single and Texas loaded the bases in the third to chase Duensing. Kinsler, the second batter reliever Alex Burnett faced, tripled to deep right-center.
Morneau’s 17th home run of the season in the fourth was the first homer by Minnesota since Aug. 17. In the sixth, Morneau was thrown at home by Craig Gentry trying to score on a single to center.
NOTES: Texas RHP Yu Darvish, who missed his last start with tightness in his right quadriceps, threw a 30-pitch bullpen session and took fielding practice before the game. He will throw again in the bullpen Sunday ahead of his scheduled start Tuesday against Tampa Bay. … Twins LF Josh Willingham was back in the lineup after missing two games with a stiff neck. … Rangers manager Ron Washington said RHP Koji Uehara (strained right lat) may come off the disabled list Sunday if he has no setbacks after throwing a scoreless inning of relief for Triple-A Round Rock. … Ben Revere became the fourth player in Twins history with consecutive 30-stolen base seasons. … The Rangers gave away Washington bobblehead dolls to 30,000 fans.