Seager hits a 2-run double and 5 Rangers pitchers combine for 3-hitter in 3-0 win over Rays

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Seager Hits Double In Rangers 3-0 Win Over Rays
Texas Rangers' Corey Seager hits a double that scored teammates Jonathan Ornelas and Marcus Semien during the third inning of a baseball game against the Tampa Bay Rays in Arlington, Texas, Friday, July 5, 2024. (AP Photo/LM Otero)

ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) — Corey Seager extended his hitting streak to 10 games with a two-run double and Michael Lorenzen combined with four relievers on a three-hitter as the Texas Rangers blanked the Tampa Bay Rays 3-0 on Friday night.

Seager went the opposite way with a double into the left-center field gap after consecutive two-out singles in the third inning by No. 9 batter Jonathan Ornelas and leadoff hitter Marcus Semien. Nathaniel Lowe drove in Seager with a single for the only other Texas run.

Lorenzen (5-4) allowed only one hit and struck out four, but walked five in his five innings. The right-hander walked the bases loaded in the fifth before striking out Brandon Lowe, the final batter he faced.

“I thought I made some good pitches. They just weren’t swinging, and so it was getting me behind the counts. And I was kind of stubborn to making those pitches,” Lorenzen said. “It wasn’t pretty on my end, but wins make everything better.”

Jose Leclerc worked a scoreless sixth after relieving Lorenzen. Jacob Latz got two outs, David Robertson pitched 1 1/3 innings and Kirby Yates worked a perfect ninth for his 12th save in as many chances.

“We had to make a lot of pitches with traffic out there. … Guys had to make pitches,” manager Bruce Bochy said. “Wasn’t easy, but they did get it done.”

It was the ninth shutout this season by the Rangers. Tampa Bay was held scoreless for the fifth time, the first since June 8.

Rays right-hander Shane Baz (0-1) struck out six over six innings in his first big league start since July 10, 2022. The Texas native, who had Tommy John surgery in September 2022, was recalled from Triple-A Durham earlier Friday.

Five of the seven hits that Baz allowed came in the Rangers’ three-run third. The right-hander walked only one while throwing 59 of 92 pitches for strikes, and hit 99 mph in his first game back.

“Strike throwing set the tone early on, and then you could tell Texas made an adjustment, bunched their hits right there,” Rays manager Kevin Cash said. “But he did a nice job of kind of rebounding from that, and to give us an opportunity to win.”

A day after the Rays left a season-high 13 runners on base in a 10-8 win over Kansas City, they stranded 11 against Texas. Along with the three hits, eight Tampa batters reached on walks.

“I really thought we had a lot of good at-bats,” Cash said. “Sometimes you’re not going to get a ton of hits.”

It was the first game this season that big league brothers Nathaniel and Josh Lowe played against each other. Both were on the injured list when the teams played at Tampa Bay the first week of this season.

Their mother, Wendy, was unable to attend the AL Wild Card playoff series between the teams last October after being diagnosed with brain cancer. She is in Texas for the three-game series this weekend.

TRAINER’S ROOM

Rays: RHP Justin Sterner was optioned to Durham after Baz was recalled from the Triple-A team.

Rangers: 3B Josh Smith was out of the lineup because of left glute tightness. The potential All-Star stayed in Thursday’s game after being checked on after an infield single in the eighth, then in the ninth made an impressive running and lunging over-the-shoulder catch in shallow left field. He missed a couple of games in mid-June dealing with the same issue. … RHP Josh Sborz (right rotator cuff strain) was reinstated from his second stint on the injured list this season. … RHP Dane Dunning went on the 15-day IL for the second time with right shoulder soreness.

UP NEXT

Rays RHP Taj Bradley (3-4, 3.42 ERA) has a 1.24 ERA his last five starts, with 40 strikeouts over 29 innings. Rangers lefty Andrew Heaney (3-9, 4.04) has a 3.21 ERA over his past 12 games, with a 3-6 record in that span.

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AP MLB: https://apnews.com/hub/mlb