Trio of homers in first 3 innings help Rangers beat Tigers

Aug 26, 2022, 8:40 AM | Updated: 9:50 pm

Texas Rangers relief pitcher Jose Leclerc throws during the ninth inning of a baseball game against...

Texas Rangers relief pitcher Jose Leclerc throws during the ninth inning of a baseball game against the Detroit Tigers in Arlington, Texas, Friday, Aug. 26, 2022. The Rangers won 7-6. (AP Photo/LM Otero)

(AP Photo/LM Otero)

ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) — Nathaniel Lowe, Ezequiel Duran and Mark Mathias homered in the first three innings, and the Texas Rangers held on to beat the Detroit Tigers 7-6 on Friday night.

Adolis García extended his hitting streak to 22 games for Texas, matching Toronto slugger Vladimir Guerrero Jr. for the longest in the American League this season. García reached on a dribbler down the third-base line in the third inning.

Lowe hit a 447-foot solo shot to center field in the first that cleared the batter’s eye. His career-high 21st home run of the season gave him three in three games for the first time. He went 2 for 3 with a walk and is hitting .362 since the All-Star break.

“I’ve got good hitters in front and behind me,” Lowe said, “and I’m getting some mistakes to capitalize on.”

Duran launched a three-run homer to left in the second. Mathias added a two-run, opposite-field drive into the Texas bullpen in right-center in the third during his first career three-hit game.

The Rangers have won six of their last eight games and are 7-4 under interim manager Tony Beasley, who replaced Chris Woodward on Aug. 15.

Detroit rookie Riley Greene had a career-high three hits with four RBIs, including a two-run homer in the ninth.

Glenn Otto (6-8) gave up four runs in five innings for Texas. He had a 1.99 ERA in his previous four starts.

It was an unpleasant homecoming for Tigers starter Tyler Alexander, who graduated from Carroll High in nearby Southlake and pitched two seasons for TCU in Fort Worth. Alexander (3-8) allowed all seven Rangers runs, a career high, on eight hits in three innings.

“It looked like he struggled with command,” Detroit manager A.J. Hinch said. “He struggled getting into counts. And then they hit him hard.”

Jose Leclerc gave up Greene’s homer but stranded the potential tying run at first base. He struck out three and earned his second save.

Lowe’s homer was lefty-on-lefty. He went into play as the major leagues’ best left-handed hitter against left-handed pitching this season, batting .336.

Leody Taveras had an RBI single for Texas in the third before Mathias’ homer made it 7-2.


RHP Garrett Hill, the first of three Tigers relievers, pitched three scoreless innings in his first big league game out of the bullpen following eight starts. … LHP Taylor Heard, the first of Texas’ three relievers, has retired 15 of 16 batters in his last two appearances, with nine strikeouts.


This is the first big league series in his home state for Houston-born Tigers rookie Kody Clemens, son of pitching great Roger Clemens.

“It feels good to be home,” said Kody Clemens, who was promoted from Triple-A Toledo on May 30 and has appeared in 40 games as a utility player.

Roger Clemens, the seven-time Cy Young Award winner, was among 10 family members in attendance.

“It’s a big homecoming,” said Kody Clemens, who didn’t get into Friday’s game.


Tigers: SS Javier Báez returned to the lineup after missing Detroit’s previous game Wednesday with back spasms. Báez went 0 for 5 with two strikeouts. … RHP Michael Pineda (triceps tightness) will pitch Sunday at Triple-A Toledo and probably return to the rotation next Thursday or Friday.

Rangers: LHP Cole Ragans (left calf strain) was placed on the 15-day injured list, retroactive to Tuesday. … RHP Jon Gray (left oblique strain) is expected to return this season but with modified innings.


LHP Dallas Keuchel (2-7, 8.53 ERA) will make his Rangers debut Saturday night after being selected from Triple-A Round Rock. The 2015 AL Cy Young Award winner was designated for assignment by the Chicago White Sox after eight starts and again by Arizona on July 20 after four starts. He’ll face Tigers LHP Eduardo Rodriguez (2-3, 3.89), who returned last Sunday after personal off-field issues had sidelined him since mid-May. He pitched five shutout innings to beat the Los Angeles Angels.


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Trio of homers in first 3 innings help Rangers beat Tigers