ARLINGTON, Texas–Taylor Ward hit a tiebreaking RBI double during Los Angeles’ three-run sixth inning that ended with a triple play and Matt Duffy had a two-run home run among three hits as the Angels beat the Texas Rangers 5-2 on Tuesday night.
Ward doubled into the left-field corner to score Shohei Ohtani from first base off Dennis Santana (3-8), the first of three Texas relievers. Mike Ford and Jo Adell added RBI singles off John King.
With the bases loaded and none out, Max Stassi hit a sharp grounder to third base. Josh Jung fielded the ball behind the bag, stepped on the base, threw to second, and Marcus Semien threw on to Nathaniel Lowe at first to complete the triple play. It was the Rangers’ second triple play this season–a club first–and the eighth in the franchise’s 51 seasons in Texas.
Patrick Sandoval (6-9) got his third consecutive win after giving up the tying run in the fifth inning. Sandoval allowed both Rangers runs on three hits, striking out seven and walking four. His winning streak follows a seven-game losing streak that ran from mid-June to mid-August.
Three Angels relievers held the Rangers scoreless on two hits through four innings with Jimmy Herget earning his sixth save in nine opportunities.
The Angels have won four of their last five games and opened a lead of 1 1/2 games over the Rangers in the race to finish third in the AL West.
Texas has lost 17 of its last 22 games to fall a season-high 21 games below .500.
Sandoval gave up a first-inning RBI double to Corey Seager and didn’t allow another hit until the fifth. Bubba Thompson beat out a bunt for a two-out single and scored on Semien’s double to center.
Texas rookie starter Cole Ragans gave up two runs on seven hits. Ragans’ five strikeouts matched his big-league high, and he didn’t walk a batter for the first time in his seven major league starts.
Duffy pulled a 3-2 fastball just inside the left-field foul pole for his second home run of the season. Both have come in his last eight games. Duffy was reinstated on Aug. 29 after missing 52 games with back spasms.
Ohtani extended his hitting streak to six games.