Blue Jays can't complete sweep, fall to Rangers 6-2
Toronto Blue Jays' Jose Reyes (7) follows through for a single against the Texas Rangers during the third inning of a baseball game, Sunday, May 18, 2014, in Arlington, Texas. (AP Photo/Jim Cowsert)
Schuyler Dixon, The Associated Press
Published Sunday, May 18, 2014 6:12PM EDT
ARLINGTON, Texas -- Mitch Moreland hit a tiebreaking homer in the seventh inning, Alex Rios had a two-run triple and the Texas Rangers avoided a three-game sweep with a 6-2 victory against the Toronto Blue Jays on Sunday.
Making his second straight start at first base with Prince Fielder sidelined by a neck strain, Moreland hit a line drive just over the wall in left field off R.A. Dickey (4-4) to break a 2-all tie.
The Rangers had gone 23 innings without an extra-base hit when Rios drove one off the right-centre wall in the fourth.
Juan Francisco and Edwin Encarnacion homered for the Blue Jays, who had won a franchise-record six straight in Texas, including a four-game sweep in their only visit last year.
The Rangers, who snapped a four-game losing streak, were in position to add to the lead Moreland gave them in the seventh when Toronto manager John Gibbons got the Blue Jays out of the jam with a challenge after three previous visits with umpires ended without a video review.
Michael Choice lined out to Francisco, who tagged third base with his glove as Robinson Chirinos was diving back to the bag. Dale Scott called Chirinos safe, but a review lasting nearly 3 minutes overturned it and gave Toronto an inning-ending double play.
Gibbons' move ended up not mattering much when Shin-Soo Choo and Adrian Beltre had run-scoring hits in the eighth. Those two scored on Rios' triple to give Texas a 2-1 lead.
Moreland, who also had a double, hit his second homer of the season after Rios just beat Francisco's throw for an error on one of the plays Gibbons considered challenging. Toronto had a season-high four errors.
Texas rookie right-hander Nick Martinez left with a 2-1 lead after five innings but lost the chance for his first big league win on Encarnacion's ninth homer, a shot to left field off Aaron Poreda in the sixth.
Poreda (2-0) ended up getting the win after a scoreless seventh, and closer Joakim Soria pitched a shaky but scoreless ninth in a non-save situation on his 30th birthday.
Francisco's home run into the upper deck in right field was among four hits allowed by Martinez in a solid outing that should give him a chance to stay in the rotation with four Texas starters on the disabled list.
Dickey allowed three hits and four runs in falling to 12-12 against the team that drafted him and gave him his first shot in the majors 13 years ago.