With booming bats, Texas puts brakes on skid

With booming bats, Texas puts brakes on skid

ARLINGTON -- A five-run third inning helped bring the Rangers out of their offensive malaise, and they snapped a four-game losing streak with a 10-1 victory over the Yankees on Tuesday night.

The Rangers finished with 13 hits after scoring four runs on 23 hits in their previous four games. Elvis Andrus had three hits, and Nomar Mazara had a two-hit night on his 21st birthday. Nine of the Rangers runs scored with two outs, including those on homers by Ian Desmond and Rougned Odor.

"We just had a lot of good at-bats tonight, selective at-bats," Desmond said. "We made it a point of swinging at strikes -- strikes we wanted to swing at."

A.J. Griffin earned the victory by holding the Yankees to one run in eight innings and 98 pitches. He allowed four hits and one walk and struck out five, improving his record to 3-0 with a 2.52 ERA.

"[Griffin] added on to what he has already been doing," Rangers manager Jeff Banister said. "We've obviously had solid starts from all our starters, but more important was how economical he was and how efficient he was. He used all his pitches, threw strikes with all his pitches and kept their hitters off-balance."

Griffin's outstanding start

Yankees starter Luis Severino, seeking his first win of 2016 in his fourth start, allowed six runs on seven hits and two walks in just three innings. The 22-year-old has pitched fewer than five innings only twice in 15 career starts.

"They're a good hitting team, and [Severino's] location was a little bit off tonight," Yankees catcher Brian McCann said. "He knows what he's doing. He's poised. I just don't think he had his arm slot tonight; he was a little bit erratic."

MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
Big hits with two outs: After hitting .167 with runners in scoring position over their last four games, the Rangers delivered early in those situations, and they did it with two outs. Prince Fielder had an RBI single in the first with two outs. All of the Rangers' runs in the third came with two outs, including the two plated on Mitch Moreland's single and the one on Andrus' single.

"I think we just went out there early and grinded out our at-bats and just stayed with that approach," Moreland said. More >

Rangers' five-run inning

Severino can't get final strike: Severino started the third inning with two quick groundouts and looked to be finding a rhythm. He got up 1-2 on Mazara but allowed a line-drive single and then an opposite-field double to Adrian Beltre. After intentionally walking Fielder to load the bases, Severino once again came within one strike of ending the inning, but he threw three straight balls to walk Desmond and score Mazara. The Rangers went on to score four more runs in the inning off Severino.

Steady rain fell for a few minutes during that inning, sending most of the crowd at Globe Life Park scurrying for cover, but the Yankees said that had nothing to do with Severino's struggles.

"I was watching to see if he was slipping. He wasn't slipping," manager Joe Girardi said. "I didn't think that was the issue." More >

Beltran's diving catch

Wild again: Desmond scored twice on wild pitches to Andrus: first in the third inning, when Severino uncorked one, then again in the seventh, when Ivan Nova let an errant pitch fly. Desmond scored three runs in a game for the second time in the past three games. He leads the Rangers with 17 runs -- six more than any other Texas player.

"That's really a part of aggressive baserunning," Desmond said. "With good hitters up there, the pitcher knows he can't put the ball in the middle of the zone, and it puts pressure on the catcher to block the ball, because we are taking advantage of anything in the dirt."

Desmond scores on a wild pitch

Yankees rally fizzles: After six frustrating innings with only two baserunners against Griffin, the Yankees finally strung together some productive plate appearances in the seventh but could only cash in one run. Brett Gardner led off with a walk against Griffin, Carlos Beltran singled on a grounder to right and Mark Teixeira drove in Gardner with a single, a ground ball that deflected off the glove of shifted shortstop Andrus. But McCann hit into a double play, and Starlin Castro struck out to end the rally.

"We should have put better swings on his mistakes, but he didn't have many," Teixeira said.

WHAT'S NEXT
Yankees: Veteran lefty CC Sabathia will start on Wednesday hoping to improve upon back-to-back 4 2/3-inning outings in which he struggled with his fastball command. Sabathia is 6-2 with a 5.04 ERA in nine starts at Globe Life Park.

Rangers: Left-hander Martin Perez goes for his first win of the season when he pitches on Wednesday in just his second career start against the Yankees.

Watch every out-of-market regular-season game live on MLB.TV.

T.R. Sullivan has covered the Rangers since 1989, and for MLB.com since 2006. Follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger and listen to his podcast.

Dave Sessions is a contributor to MLB.com and covered the Yankees on Tuesday.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.