ARLINGTON, TEXAS – Texas Rangers starter Colby Lewis did a bit of reminiscing when he noticed the stands filling up while he warmed up in the bullpen before the game.
The veteran right-hander went out and provided a promising flashback performance against the New York Yankees, even after another leadoff homer by Brett Gardner. The Rangers clinched their first series in a month with a 3-2 victory on Wednesday night.
Lewis retired the last 13 batters he faced in seven strong innings, much like the 2010 AL Championship Series when he beat the Yankees twice — including the Game 6 clincher at home that got Texas to its first World Series. He had since missed the last half of 2012 because of elbow surgery and missed all of 2013, when he had an unprecedented hip procedure for a major league pitcher that was just short of a full hip replacement.
“It was definitely an adjustment period getting used to a prosthetic hip, I guess,” Lewis said. “As the weeks have kind of transitioned into the second half, I feel like every time I take the mound, I feel like I’m getting stronger, my mechanics are sharper.”
The Rangers had lost seven consecutive series since taking two of three against Minnesota from June 27-29.
Texas went ahead to stay with three runs in the first off Hiroki Kuroda (7-7). Elvis Andrus had an RBI double and scored the tiebreaking run on a single by Adrian Beltre, who came home on Leonys Martin’s single.
Lewis (7-8) allowed four hits, with four strikeouts and New York didn’t have another runner after Carlos Beltran’s two-out single in the third.
Kuroda, meanwhile, struck out four while allowing nine hits over seven innings.
“My pitches weren’t good at all today, but somehow I was able to hold them to just three runs,” Kuroda said. “That’s the type of pitching I had.
“Today they hit off me before I could get into any type of rhythm.”
The Yankees’ Derek Jeter was 0-for-4 in his final game in Texas, where a pregame ceremony honoring him included a personal appearance by former President George W. Bush.
Indians 2, Mariners 0
In Cleveland, Corey Kluber pitched a three-hitter for his first career shutout, outdueling Felix Hernandez and leading the Indians over Seattle.
Kluber (11-6) gave up three singles, struck out eight and walked none.
Hernandez (11-3) allowed four hits in seven innings. He has given up two runs or fewer and pitched at least seven innings in 14 consecutive starts, a major league record.
Orioles 4, Angels 3
In Baltimore, Kevin Gausman pitched seven innings of three-hit ball and Adam Jones homered for the Orioles.
Astros 8, Athletics 1
In Houston, Dallas Keuchel pitched a four-hitter and Robbie Grossman homered to cap a six-run first inning that sent the Astros over Oakland.
Tigers 7, White Sox 2
In Detroit, Max Scherzer pitched seven impressive innings as the Tigers scored six runs in the first to beat Chicago.
Blue Jays 6, Red Sox 1
In Boston, Mark Buehrle pitched 6⅔ innings to earn his first win in almost two months and Dioner Navarro had three hits and three RBIs to lead Toronto over the Red Sox.
Munenori Kawasaki was 0-for-3 for the Blue Jays.
Royals 3, Twins 2
In Kansas City, Salvador Perez triggered a go-ahead rally with a double in the sixth inning and made several spectacular plays behind the plate.
Norichika Aoki was hitless in four at-bats for Kansas City.