Martin Perez became the first Ranger rookie pitcher to win five straight starts, and the Ranger bats lit up Mariners starter Felix Hernandez en route to a 12-4 win over Seattle Wednesday afternoon.
The offense was clicking on all cylinders, totaling 17 hits in the ballgame. The Rangers scored nine runs off of King Felix in his worst outing of the year. Hernandez gave up 11 hits and failed to record an out in the fourth inning before being pulled from the game.
Leonys Martin started the scoring in the second inning when he launched a two-out pitch over the left-center field wall for a three-run home run.
Ian Kinsler singled to lead off the third inning, stole second base, and advanced to third when the throw bounced off his helmet on a dive into second. Alex Rios singled and stole second to set up another two-out, RBI hit for Texas.
Geovany Soto dropped his second single of the day into left field to plate Kinsler and Rios.
With each of their first five runs scoring with two outs, the Rangers changed their approach in the fourth inning.
The hits went double, single, double, single from Jurickson Profar, Martin, Elvis Andrus, and Kinsler with no one out against Hernandez to score three runs and chase the Mariner ace from the game. Martin finished with a season-high four RBIs in the game.
Adrian Beltre welcomed Seattle reliever Brandon Maurer to the game with a two-run home run to left-center that made it a double-digit lead for Texas.
Mitch Moreland hit his second home run of the series to lead off the seventh, and a Ranger rally ended in another two-out RBI as Andrus singled home the twelfth and final run for Texas.
To say Hernandez wasn’t on his game would be an understatement.
The three innings pitched for Felix was his shortest outing of the year and tied the second-shortest of his career. He had one other start with just 3 IP against Texas in 2005.
His previous low for innings pitched in 2013 was 5.0, which has happened four times.
Hernandez surrendered only five runs in the month of July. He has now given up 23 runs in August. Fifteen of those have come against Texas in just eight innings of work.
The Rangers’ defense took no mercy on the Mariner bats, either.
David Murphy threw out Kendrys Morales at second base on a ball Morales hit off the wall in left field in the fourth, and Profar ended the inning with a run-saving diving stop at third base, stranding a runner 90 feet from home.
Perez earned a quality start, allowing just two runs on five hits through six innings Wednesday. The lefty threw 100 pitches in his fifth straight win and eighth win of 2013, making him the AL leader in wins among rookie pitchers.
The Mariner offense against the Ranger rookie consisted of a pair of solo home runs.
Seattle got on the board in the fifth inning when Dustin Ackley lined a 2-0 pitch over the right field wall with one out. Kyle Seager put in his usual damage against Ranger pitching with a leadoff home run in the sixth inning.
Seager finished the season series against Texas with a .402 batting average (31-for-77) and six home runs, hitting safely in 18-of-19 games.
Raul Ibanez hit a single to left-center with runners on first and second and Ross Wolf on the mound in the eighth inning to tack on the third Mariner run. Dustin Ackley struck again in the ninth inning with an RBI double that brought home the fourth and final run for Seattle.
Robbie Ross tossed a perfect seventh inning before Wolf surrendered a run in each of the final two innings. Wolf struck out five Mariners in his two innings of work.
But the Ranger offense was the story on Wednesday, and in the three-game sweep of the Mariners.
Texas scored 24 runs in the three-game set, and now has 43 runs in the last six contests with Seattle. The Rangers are averaging over six runs per game since Nelson Cruz accepted a 50-game suspension for alleged involvement in the Biogenesis scandal.
The Rangers have an off day Thursday before they begin a home series with the Minnesota Twins Friday.