Officially a desperate team the Rangers did what their precarious position requires by again plastering Houston on Monday night.
The Rangers flattened the dismal Astros early and rolled to a clear-the-bench 12-0 victory at Rangers Ballpark in Arlington. Alex Rios hit for a cycle in his first four at-bats as the Rangers tripled their run production from the disappointing three-game series at Kansas City last weekend.
Left-hander Derek Holland pitched his second shutout of the season to win for the first time since Aug. 4. Holland is in line to start the next-to-last game of the regular season.
“This what we have to do” Rios said. “We know what’s coming is not easy but we’re very optimistic.”
The rout kept the Rangers two games behind Tampa Bay and moved them to one game behind Cleveland for the two American League wild-card spots. Manager Ron Washington insisted he will not obsess on the scoreboard in these decisive days.
“We need to beat who we’re [playing]” Washington said. “T...