Darvish, Rangers can't match Athletics
JUN 18, 2013 10:20p ET
After a breath of fresh offensive air Monday, the Rangers reverted back to their June form by collecting only three singles against Oakland on Tuesday. They would have needed a lot more that that as a not-so-sharp Darvish was tagged for five runs in a 6-2 loss to the Athletics.
The Rangers have scored two or fewer runs in seven of their past eight games, and Darvish hasn't won a game in more than a month.
Neither the offense nor Darvish ever found its stride Tuesday against Oakland, which pushed its lead in the American League West back to three games.
"We scored a few runs and got the clutch hit when we needed it (Monday)," said Texas outfielder Nelson Cruz, who went 0 for 3. "I thought we started pretty good today. A.J. (Pierzynski) got a hit when we needed it to get close. After that, he ( Jarrod Parker) found a way to shut us down."
The Rangers trailed 3-0 before scoring twice in the third on a Pierzynski RBI single to right-center. But even on that play the Rangers paid a price as Ian Kinsler was hit by John Jaso's mask during a collision while sliding at home and had to get three stitches. He returned to the game with a bloody jersey and a bandage on his cheek.
The third inning, which featured two hits, was the highlight for the Texas offense Tuesday. The only other hit the Rangers had was Kinsler's single to left to lead off the bottom of the first. It should have been a sign of things to come that Kinsler moved to second on a sacrifice and was stranded there.
Parker (6-6) is now 4-1 in his career vs. Texas with a 2.91 ERA. The Rangers had runners in scoring position against him in only the first and third innings.
"I think he moved his fastball around well," Texas manager Ron Washington said. "Good changeup. He had a real good changeup. I thought he made some mistakes with some pitches and we missed them. They didn't, and we did."
Despite striking out 10 batters, Darvish worked only one 1-2-3 inning in his six innings of work. He hadn't allowed a homer in his first three June starts but served up two Tuesday, with Brandon Moss hitting a leadoff homer in the second and Jaso doing the same in the third. A sloppy fourth inning that included an error by Lance Berkman and a Darvish balk helped net the Athletics two more runs.
And with the way the offense isn't going for Texas, the Rangers can't afford to give teams runs as a gift.
Darvish hasn't won a game since May 16 but didn't feel like he pitched poorly against Oakland, which has beaten him in Arlington three of the four times he has faced them.
"I didn't feel that I pitched badly, but I feel I gave up runs too easily," he said. "They (the Athletics) are a very good team offensively, and they're very hard to get outs."
The combination of pitching and a lack of offense did allow the Rangers to set a club record Tuesday. A Texas starter hasn't won a decision in 17 games, breaking the old mark of 16 set by the 1975 Rangers.
Even though the starting pitching has been uneven over that span, there hasn't been much help.
"We haven't been scoring runs," Washington said, "Tonight, I think it was [that] Yu wasn't bad, but Parker was better. We got two runs off him, and that's all we could get. They put some at-bats together tonight. . . .
"We just went through this spell where we weren't scoring runs and it was tough for our starters to hang out there when we wasn't putting runs on the board."
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