ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) - Phil Coke's return to the Detroit Tigers' rotation didn't go quite as planned.
The lefthander was knocked around in five rough innings and the Texas Rangers beat the Tigers 7-3 on Wednesday night.
Coke (1-6) was recalled from an injury rehab assignment with Triple-A Toledo and was reinstated from the 15-day disabled list before the game. He allowed six runs - four earned - and 10 hits.
A converted reliever making his 11th start in 170 big league appearances, he'd been out since May 24 with a bone bruise on his right foot.
Manager Jim Leyland said Coke seemed ``sluggish,' and Coke agreed with his manager's assessment.
``I felt like my timing was off,' Coke said. ``If sluggish was the word he chose, he was probably right. I wasn't working at the speed I would normally. I was trying to find that groove, and I didn't exactly find it throughout the game. It was not exactly as easy I was hoping it was going to be as far as putting the ball where it was asked for. And I paid the price for it.'
Coke didn't like how his pregame warmup went.
``I felt a little lethargic, I didn't feel 'on.' I went out there, gave it what I had, and it wasn't enough,' he said. ``I wasn't exactly locating where I wanted to, When you put it on a tee down the middle, good hitters are gonna hit it, and that's exactly what I was doing.'
Meanwhile, Rangers starter Alexi Ogando scattered six hits over 7 2-3 innings to remain unbeaten, and Adrian Beltre homered as Texas avoided a three-game sweep by Detroit.
The Tigers had 21 runs and 38 hits while winning the first two games of the series and had taken four straight overall. But Detroit couldn't get much going against Ogando (7-0), who struck out seven to match a career high and walked two.
Ogando became the first major league pitcher to win his first seven decisions as a starter since Jered Weaver went 9-0 for the Los Angeles Angels in 2006.
``He's a good pitcher,' Leyland said. ``There's nothing fluky about it. He's 7-0 for a reason.'
Elvis Andrus had three hits for the AL West-leading Rangers.
Detroit's Don Kelly hit a first-inning solo homer, his first of the season, and drove in two runs.
The Tigers failed to complete their first three-game road sweep of the Rangers since May 1-3, 2001.
``You're getting kind of hopeful when you say come in and sweep the Rangers,' Leyland said. ``We thought we had a great shot. But they're league champions.'
Detroit wrapped up a 4-2 road trip heading into an eight-game homestand that gets under way Thursday night against Seattle.
The Rangers loaded the bases in the third on three straight singles. Craig Gentry then hit a chopper to third baseman Kelly, who threw wildly to the plate for an error, allowing Yorvit Torrealba to score. Catcher Victor Martinez retrieved the ball about 20 feet behind the plate and threw to Kelly covering home, but Kelly failed to catch the ball cleanly and Chris Davis was safe as the two collided.
``He just air-mailed it, that's all,' Leyland said of Kelly's errant throw. ``It's part of the game.'
Josh Hamilton followed with a two-run double to stretch the Rangers' lead to 4-1. Andrus, who had fresh legs after getting the previous game off, added an RBI single in the fourth, and Beltre's run-scoring single in the fifth made it 6-1.
Beltre led off the seventh against Adam Wilk with his 12th homer off the left field foul pole.
In the ninth against Neftali Feliz, Austin Jackson's RBI double and Kelly's run-producing groundout got the Tigers within four runs, but Feliz struck out Brennan Boesch to end the game.
Notes: To open a roster spot for Coke, the Tigers optioned C Omir Santos to Toledo. ... Coke made his first career start against Texas. ... Kelly's last homer was on Oct. 1, 2010 at Baltimore. ... Miguel Cabrera had two hits and went 6 for 13 in the three-game series.
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