ATLANTA (105.3 The Fan) – An offensive onslaught ended in a Rangers win on Wednesday afternoon before a sparse Atlanta crowd.
Texas took game one of a day/night doubleheader 12-8 over the Braves.
The Rangers offense had 12 hits, including two home runs, while the Braves had 15 hits of their own, including two home runs.
Texas was led by nonother than Elvis Andrus who had a four-hit game. One of those hits was Andrus’ career-high 20th home run of the season.
The home run helped Andrus become the ninth player (12th time) in Rangers history to have at least 20 home runs and 20 stolen bases in a season. Ian Desmond was the last Ranger to reach the feat in 2016.
Newly acquired starter Miguel Gonzalez had a rough debut on the mound for Texas.
The right-hander only went three innings and allowed four earned runs, putting Texas behind 4-2 early in the ballgame.
Part of the reason Gonzalez was pulled is because Texas had runners on second and third with only one out in the top of the fourth when his place in the order came to the plate. Manager Jeff Banister decided to go to the bench and have Will Middlebrooks pinch-hit … and it paid off. The utility man tripled to left to score Nicholas and Napoli to give the Rangers a lead for good at 5-4.
Long-man Austin Bibens-Dirkx entered the game in the bottom of the fourth and proceeded to throw three shutout innings to preserve the bullpen.
Matt Kemp and Ender Inciarte hit home runs for the Braves in the loss. Mike Napoli hit the other home run for the Rangers in the fifth, his 29th of the season.
Texas and Atlanta will play again at 6:35 p.m. on 105.3 The Fan.