ARLINGTON – Neither starter made it through five innings, which made it an interesting battle of the bullpens between the Texas Rangers and Detroit Tigers on Sunday night.
By the end of what turned into a marathon game, the Rangers had persevered with an 11-8 victory over the Tigers. Texas won the four-game series, 3-1.
Rangers starter Derek Holland lasted only 4 2/3 innings, allowing four runs on eight hits with three walks and six strikeouts. Tigers starter Doug Fister, meanwhile, also made it through only 4 2/3 innings, allowing five runs on nine hits.
The Rangers had a 5-4 lead going into the sixth inning, but the Tigers rallied for the lead. With two on and two out, the Rangers intentionally walked Miguel Cabrera, who was 3-for-3 with two homers at that point, to load the bases and set up a lefty-lefty matchup between Prince Fielder and Michael Kirkman.
That decision backfired, as Fielder ripped a bases-clearing, three-run double to center to give the Tigers a 7-5 lead.
The Rangers, though, answered with four runs in the sixth, highlighted by three-run homer by David Murphy.
Texas extended its lead with two more runs in the seventh on a sacrifice fly by Murphy and an RBI single by Lance Berkman.
In all, the Rangers matched their season high with 18 hits, including four by Adrian Beltre and three by Geovany Soto.
Cabrera had an impressive night for the Tigers himself, homering for a third time in the eighth inning.
The Rangers used six relievers with left-hander Robbie Ross getting the win, as he is now 8-0 in his big-league career. Joe Nathan worked around a leadoff walk in the ninth, converting his 13th save.
The Tigers went through four relievers, as Jose Ortega took the loss.
The game took 3-hours, 46-minutes, the longest game for the Rangers this season.
-- Drew Davison