BOSTON -- Alexi Ogando allowed one run Wednesday in his first start off the disabled list, Adrian Beltre homered, and four relievers made Elvis Andrus’ two-run double in the seventh inning stand up as the Rangers beat the Red Sox 3-2.
The win came a night after the Rangers took a 17-5 beating in the series opener, allowing 19 hits. The Red Sox had only five against Ogando and four Rangers relievers.
Ogando made quick work of the Red Sox over the first three innings, facing the minimum despite allowing a hit and a walk.
He needed only 37 pitches the first through the Boston order, and retired Daniel Nava on strikes to start the fourth with a 1-0 lead thanks to Beltre’s 12th homer of the season moments earlier. But Mike Carp followed with a towering double to center that was about a foot shy of being a home run, and Dustin Pedroia walked.
That brought up David Ortiz and his 28 career homers against the Rangers. Ogando, though, got him swinging and got Mike Napoli looking on the eighth pitch of the at-bat to end the Boston threat.
Ogando worked around a two-out walk in the fifth and got the first two outs in the sixth before Pedroia lofted a towering flyball just over the Green Monster, a ball that is caught in every other ballpark except Houston.
The homer tied the game and ended Ogando game at 92 pitches. He allowed only three hits and three walks while striking out six in his first start since May 15 at Oakland.
The Rangers quickly pulled back ahead, though they might have lost Moreland for a few games in the process. He started the seventh with a double down the first-base line off Craig Breslow, but slowed as he headed into second base with an injury.
Moreland was replaced by Jeff Baker, who stayed at second on a sacrifice bunt attempt by Jurickson Profar that resulted in the first out. Pinch hitter Craig Gentry followed and took a walk despite two quick strikes against him.
Koji Uehara entered, and Andrus drove the first pitch from his former teammate into the gap in left-center field to drive in both runners.
Boston threatened in its half off the inning, which started with Neal Cotts walking Stephen Drew. Jose Iglesias followed with a single off Robbie Ross, who retired the next three Red Sox in order to keep the Rangers’ cushion at two runs.
The escape loomed large as Boston scored one off Tanner Scheppers with two outs in the eighth. Scheppers walked Mike Napoli and surrendered a well-placed broken-bat double to Jarrod Saltalamacchia that allowed Napoli to ramble home.
Joe Nathan took care of the rest with a perfect ninth inning for his 18th save.
Cotts got the win despite walking three and record only one out. But it ranks as his first in the majors since July 1, 2006, with the White Sox.
-- Jeff Wilson