Rangers another 1-0 win to clinch Astros series

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press

ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) - Martin Perez threw eight scoreless innings, Donnie Murphy had a sacrifice fly and the Texas Rangers got a series-clinching 1-0 victory over the Houston Astros on Sunday.

Perez (2-0) scattered five hits and walked three, but the left-hander benefited from four double-play grounders. He struck out two.

Murphy's deep flyball to the left-center gap in the sixth sent home Josh Wilson for the lone run of the game against Brett Oberholtzer (0-3).

Alexi Ogando worked a perfect ninth to convert his first save chance.

Murphy was in the game only because shortstop Elvis Andrus got ejected at the end of the third after taking a called third strike. Andrus was thrown out of the game after having words with home plate umpire Alan Porter and tossed his bat away from the plate.

It was only the 10th 1-0 victory for the Rangers in their 1,601 regular-season home games since moving into their current ballpark 20 years ago. It was their second in three games against the Astros, the first time Texas has ever had multiple 1-0 wins in the same series - home or away.

Texas won the series opener 1-0 in 12 innings Friday night after Yu Darvish was perfect thru five innings. The Astros won 6-5 in 10 innings Saturday to snap their 12-game losing streak to their instate AL West rival.

The Astros scored in only two of their 31 innings against Texas. They had a five-run fourth inning Saturday before the game-winning run in the 10th.

Houston has scored only four runs in the three games started this season by Oberholtzer, who struck out a career-high seven in seven innings against Texas.

Texas has won its last 15 series against the Astros since dropping two of three at Houston in June 2008.

Wilson and Shin-Soo Choo had consecutive singles to start the sixth before the fly by Murphy.

Andrus struck out in both of his at-bats, ending his season-opening 11-game hitting streak that was second-longest in team history. Al Oliver had hits in the Rangers' first 13 games to start the 1979 season.

Prince Fielder finished 0 for 3, dropping his average to .149 through his first 12 games with the Rangers. The Astros used a drastic shift against him this weekend that took away several hits, including a sharp liner caught by second baseman Jose Altuve in shallow right to end the sixth Sunday. Altuve fielded a ground near that spot in the fourth.

Notes: It took only 44 seconds in the first inning for replay to overturn first base umpire Joe West's call that Choo was safe at first base. West had ruled that Altuve's throw had pulled Jesus Guzman off first base. Astros manager Bo Porter came out, and replay showed that Guzman had stayed on the base and Choo was out. ... Murphy played second base, and Wilson moved from second base to shortstop. ... Rain was falling when the game started, but the sun was out when it ended 2 hours, 15 minutes later.


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