ARLINGTON (AP) – When the Texas Rangers recalled Joey Gallo earlier in the day, manager Jeff Banister talked about what the young slugger could provide for the lineup.
Gallo then had an impressive homer in his first start this year, and Mitch Moreland also went deep the opposite way for the Rangers in their one big inning against Sonny Gray during a 6-3 loss to Oakland on Tuesday night that ended their three-game winning streak.
“Gallo’s swinging the bat well,” Banister said. “We tried to find some potential power to put in our lineup. He showed that tonight.”
Considered one of the Rangers top prospects, Gallo hit six homers in 36 games in his MLB debut last season. But before getting called up from Triple-A Round Rock and starting at first base against the A’s, he had been up for only four games in late May and his only at-bat was a flyout as a pinch-hitter.
The Rangers didn’t have a hit against Gray (5-9) until Rougned Odor singled on the first pitch of the fifth, though the aggressive player was easily thrown out trying to stretch a routine single to right into a double.
“That’s obviously a little more aggressive than we like it, based on the result of the play,” Banister said.
Gallo then homered, a 448-foot opposite-field blast over the A’s bullpen in left-center. Ryan Rua singled before Moreland also went over that bullpen, a 423-foot homer to get Texas within 5-3. Robinson Chirinos doubled to make it five consecutive hits, but the Rangers had only one more hit the rest of the night.
Texas recalled Gallo a day after revealing that Prince Fielder likely will have season-ending neck surgery for the second time in three years.
The A’s won for the fourth time in five games. AL West-leading Texas had its three-game winning streak snapped.
Nick Martinez (1-3) gave up five runs and six hits while pitching into the fifth after being recalled to start in place of Kyle Lohse, the 37-year-old right-hander designated for assignment with a 12.54 ERA after losing both of his Texas starts.
“I felt the same all four innings, just a couple of mistakes that they capitalized on it,” Martinez said. “That’s the biggest thing, I was attacking the zone.”
Coco Crisp led off the fourth with his eighth homer of the season, and Josh Reddick homered after Jed Lowrie’s single. Semien’s 21st homer started the fifth before Reddick added a run-scoring single for a 5-0 lead.
Gray, who has won all six of his career starts at Texas, had a season-high eight strikeouts over six innings. All five hits he allowed came against consecutive batters to start the fifth.
“He pitched great, and he got through a tough spot, which he wasn’t able to do against them the one time at home,” manager Bob Melvin said. “He’s working through some things in a difficult year for him, and he got through it tonight. He got us through six innings, and he pitched great.”
The start of the game was delayed 62 minutes because of rain. … It was the second time in their last four home games the Rangers had a rain delay. … Gray has allowed 17 homers, matching his career high set last season. The right-hander had been 1-8 with a 6.45 ERA his previous 14 starts.
THE OTHER BIG BOOM
Moreland has homered in three of his last eight games, and five of his last eight hits are for extra bases. He has 16 career homers against Oakland, his most against any team.
Rangers: SS Elvis Andrus was out of the lineup for the second time in a nine-day stretch that also included an off day for the team. Banister said Andrus “was a little banged up” but would play Wednesday. … OF Drew Stubbs (sprained left toe), out since May 23, was transferred on his injury rehabilitation assignment from the Arizona League to Triple-A Round Rock.
Athletics: Lefty Sean Manaea (3-5, 4.61 ERA) has allowed only two runs in 20 innings his last three starts — and the A’s have scored only once while he was pitching in that span.
Rangers: Yu Darvish (2-2, 3.12) is winless in his two starts since returning from the disabled list, but the Rangers have scored only two runs total for him in those games. The right-hander struck out 11 in six innings at Kansas City last Friday.
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