KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Scott Feldman turned in another strong start, the offense executed in clutch situations and the Texas Rangers seem to have found their early-season groove.
The Rangers went on to a 4-2 victory over the Royals on Saturday night, and are on a four-game winning streak. They extended their lead in the American League West to 5 ½ games over the Athletics although the Angels could pull to within five games with a victory later tonight.
Feldman has won six straight decisions, including his past three starts. He allowed two runs on six hits with one walk and four strikeouts over 7 2/3 innings.
The Rangers staked Feldman to an early 3-0 lead. They scored twice in the third on a two-run single by Josh Hamilton, and again in the fourth on a sacrifice fly by Mike Olt.
Feldman, who retired the first eight batters of the game, didn’t run into trouble until the fifth. He issued a leadoff walk to Salvador Perez and a single to Eric Hosmer, and both would score on RBI groundouts as the Royals pulled to within 3-2.
The walk to Perez broke a streak of 89 batters faced without a walk by Feldman, and the two runs snapped his scoreless innings streak at 17.
In the sixth, the Rangers scored a single run and Feldman worked out of a jam. He gave up consecutive singles to Lorenzo Cain and Billy Butler to start the inning, but ended the threat by getting Mike Moustakas to fly out and Perez to ground into a double play.
Feldman had a perfect seventh, and exited with a runner on third and two outs in the eighth. Mike Adams closed out the eighth by striking out Billy Butler.
With Joe Nathan unavailable for a second consecutive night, Alexi Ogando worked the ninth and earned his third save of the season.
-- Drew Davison