ARLINGTON – So much for the much-anticipated pitchers’ duel between Yu Darvish and Justin Verlander. Hits were dropping in left and right, and runs were crossing the plate early and often.
And, by the end of what turned into a surprising slugfest, the Texas Rangers had a 10-4 victory over the Detroit Tigers on Thursday night.
The Rangers knocked out Verlander before he could make it through three innings. They scored a run off him in the first inning, and then pummeled him in a seven-run third.
David Murphy started the rally with a single, Leonys Martin followed with a single and Ian Kinsler loaded the bases on a hit by pitch. Verlander then walked in a run, issuing a five-pitch walk to Elvis Andrus.
After striking out Lance Berkman, Verlander issued another bases-loaded walk to Adrian Beltre. Nelson Cruz then struck out, but Mitch Moreland delivered a two-run double down the right-field line. Geovany Soto delivered the final blow to Verlander, sending a three-run homer over the left-field fence.
Verlander had thrown 38 pitches in the third and the seven runs he allowed in the inning are the most in his nine-year career. He exited after 2 2/3 innings, allowing eight runs on six hits with two walks and three strikeouts.
The Rangers offense added single runs in the fifth on another RBI double by Moreland, and in the sixth on a solo homer by Cruz.
Darvish fared better than Verlander, but certainly didn’t have his best stuff in the beginning. He gave up three runs in the third and another run in the fourth, but pitched eight innings and retired 15 of the final 16 batters he faced.
Darvish threw a career-high 130 pitches, passing his previous high set on May 5 when he threw 127 pitches against the Red Sox.
Right-hander Cory Burns, recalled from Triple A Round Rock earlier in the day, worked around a leadoff walk in a scoreless ninth for the Rangers.
-- Drew Davison