Late HR Helps Rangers Outlast Royals 5-3

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KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Getting a huge boost from first baseman Mitch Moreland’s three-run home run late, the Texas Rangers beat the Kansas City Royals 5-3 on Friday night at Kauffman Stadium.

The loss snaps a three-game winning streak for Kansas City (44-61, 20-31 home).

On a positive note, pitcher Jeremy Guthrie turned in his best start as a newly acquired member of the Royals. He got out of a bases loaded jam in the first inning, giving up just one run on a sacrifice fly by Rangers right fielder Nelson Cruz.

Guthrie (0-3, 7.71 ERA) gave up three runs on six hits in 6 innings, striking out four and walking two. With the bases loaded and no outs in the second, Yuniesky Betancourt hit into a double play, but still got a run across that tied the game at 1-1.

Rangers All-Star lefty Matt Harrison began to settle in after a shaky start. Harrison (13-6, 3.17 ERA) gave up two runs on eight hits in 6 2/3 innings, fanning three and walking three. The Royals left a total of nine runners on base, while the Rangers (62-43, 28-22 away) only stranded three.

Royals reliever Jose Mijares (2.56 ERA) gave up a three-run HR to Moreland in the seventh inning, which gave Texas a 5-1 lead, but the Royals answered with a mini-rally to make things interesting.

Shortstop Alcides Escobar hit an RBI single in the seventh. Betancourt’s RBI double in the eighth almost went over the fence for a three-run HR that would’ve tied the game, but the score remained 5-3.

Alexi Ogando (2.84 ERA) struck out a pair to record his second save of the season.

Lefty Will Smith (2-3, 5.94 ERA) starts game two against right-hander Scott Feldman (5-6, 4.76 ERA) and the Rangers on Saturday evening at Kauffman Stadium.

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