ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) - The Los Angeles Angels were desperately trying to hold on when they positioned five players in the infield in the 10th inning
That seldom-used alignment didn't matter.
Texas leadoff hitter Leonys Martin hit the ball over every one - and the wall - for a game-ending three-run homer as the Rangers pulled out a 14-11 victory Tuesday, the second night in a row they won on a game-ending homer.
``We couldn't do much more on the offensive side. But we have some guys who have been pitching a lot, and they couldn't close it out,' Angels manager Mike Scioscia said. ``You've got to give them some credit, too. They had two out and nobody on in the ninth, and they tied the game.'
Los Angeles led four different times, but still lost its fifth straight game.
Daniel Stange (0-1), making his Angels debut and his first major league appearance since 2010, walked Mitch Moreland and Geovany Soto to start the 10th. David Murphy then reached on a fielder's choice before Los Angeles tried five infielders.
``It's a play we use. You just want to defend where you can,' Scioscia said. ``If (the batter) rolls over a pitch, you certainly want to have some defense there.'
There was no way to defend Martin's opposite-field drive that barely cleared the 14-foot wall and was just inside the left-field foul pole. It was his seventh at-bat and came on the 434th pitch thrown by a combined 14 pitchers, ending a game that lasted 4 hours, 46 minutes.
``He's shown that he can do that. He's hit some doubles down that left field line,' manager Ron Washington said. ``But the most important thing is he got a pitch up in the zone and he stayed on it.'
Closer Joe Nathan (2-1), the sixth Rangers pitcher, worked around a leadoff walk in the 10th for a scoreless inning.
Before this series, the Rangers were swept in three games at Cleveland and had been shut out in three of four games. Now they have won consecutive games with game-ending homers for the first time since 1981.
Texas, which won the series opener Monday when A.J. Pierzynski and Geovany Soto homered in the ninth off Angels closer Ernesto Frieri, forced extra innings Tuesday after Ian Kinsler drew a two-out walk in the ninth against Frieri. Kinsler then stole second base and scored on Adrian Beltre's single to make it 11-all.
Frieri had converted 25 of 27 saves before his consecutive blown chances in Texas.
``This is the most frustrating moment of my career. I never went through this. I don't know what to do,' he said. ``If they give me a chance (Wednesday), I'll go out there and try to do the same thing. I still have confidence in my stuff. ... We're very frustrated. We're all trying really hard. Tonight we hit the ball good, but we didn't pitch good.'
Mark Trumbo and Collin Cowgill homered for the Angels, who lost their fifth straight game. Josh Hamilton, the 2010 AL MVP who spent the past five seasons in Texas, drove in four runs, while Mike Trout was 4 for 4 and with two walks after going 2 for 2 with two walks Monday night.
``Any loss is tough when you have the lead and you're not able to hold it. Our guys bounced back from (Monday) night,' Scioscia said. ``Josh had big hits, Trout had a great night, Trumbo hit a home run, Howie had a big hit.'
The only Angels starter without a hit was third baseman Alberto Callaspo. He was replaced in the field in the fifth after being traded to AL West-leading Oakland for infielder Grant Green.
Angels assistant general manager Matt Klentak said Green will play mostly second and base, and will start at Triple-A Salt Lake. Chris Nelson is likely to be recalled from Salt Lake to take Callaspo's roster spot.
The Angels had their biggest lead, 11-7, after a four-run eighth when Erick Aybar's grounder easily scored pinch-runner Kole Calhoun for an 8-7 lead.
J.B. Shuck stopped in the middle of the baseline to avoid being tagged by second baseman Ian Kinsler, and then got out of a rundown when the fifth relay throw wasn't caught by pitcher Tanner Scheppers, an error that allowed him to get back to first. Howie Kendrick then added a two-run single, his 1,000th career hit, before an RBI single by Hamilton an inning after his three-run double.
Soto got the Rangers within 11-10 with his three-run homer in the eighth, that ball landing not far from where he hit his game-ending homer Monday night.
Every Texas starter had a hit off C.J. Wilson, who allowed six runs and a season-high 11 hits while throwing 109 pitches in four innings against his former team.
Notes: Scioscia was ejected in the second inning when he argued after when slow-footed Soto was called safe on a close play at first base. Crew chief Jerry Layne, who was at first base, heard only a few words from an irate Scioscia before tossing the manager. Layne then stood there stone-faced, appearing not to respond verbally, as Scioscia voiced his displeasure for a couple of more minutes before leaving the field. ... Texas starter Derek Holland allowed four runs and eight hits over six innings. He struck out six and walked two. ... Wilson has an 11.74 ERA (20 runs over 15 1-3 innings) in four starts as an opposing pitcher at Rangers Ballpark. He was 27-14 with 25 saves and a 3.89 ERA in 172 games (38 starts) there before getting a $77.5 million, five-year deal from his hometown Angels after the 2011 season.
The Associated Press News Service
The Associated Press
All Rights Reserved