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Rangers score 30 in twin-bill opener

Rangers score 30 in twin-bill opener

BALTIMORE -- The Rangers smashed their way into the record books on Wednesday night with the biggest offensive outburst seen in the Major Leagues in 110 years.

Marlon Byrd and Travis Metcalf both hit grand slams and Jarrod Saltalamacchia and Ramon Vazquez hit two home runs each as the Rangers walloped the Baltimore Orioles, 30-3, in Game 1 of a doubleheader at Camden Yards.

The 30 runs were the most in the Major Leagues since the 19th century and set a new American League record. The Boston Red Sox scored 29 runs on June 8, 1950, against the St. Louis Browns and the Chicago White Sox matched that on April 23, 1955, against the Kansas City Athletics.

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The most runs scored in a Major League game was 36 by the Chicago Colts (now the Cubs) against Louisville in the National League in 1897.

The Rangers completed the sweep in Game 2 with a 9-7 victory, and set a new American League record for most runs in a doubleheader with 39. The old record was 36 set by the Detroit Tigers against the St. Louis Browns on Aug. 14, 1937.

Metcalf, just called up on Wednesday, had eight RBI in two games. That ties a club record held previously by Toby Harrah and Bobby Bonds.

The Rangers entered the doubleheader hitting .190 with 10 runs scored in their previous five games, but they ended up setting a new club record with 29 hits in Game 1. The previous record for most runs came in a 26-7 victory over the Orioles on April 19, 1996, and they had 23 hits on three separate occasions.

"It was awesome," Rangers manager Ron Washington said. "The whole offense just came to life. I've never seen anything like it. I was hoping we would open up offensively but I wasn't expecting anything like that."

Byrd and Metcalf, who was just called up from Triple-A Oklahoma, became only the second pair of Rangers to hit grand slams in the same game. The other was July 4, 2004, when Hank Blalock and Mark Teixeira went deep with the bases loaded.

"We were just out there shaking our heads," Byrd said. "No one has seen that before and you won't see it again. The whole offense was clicking. Things were just going our way. Everybody was just trying to get hits regardless. It's a pride thing. You're trying to get hits and score runs but you don't expect that."

The Rangers, who trailed 3-0 after three innings, did all their scoring in just four innings. They scored five runs in the fourth, nine in the sixth, 10 in the eighth and six more in the ninth.

Every starter had at least two hits and scored at least one run. Every starter but right fielder Nelson Cruz had an RBI. The 49 total bases on 21 singles, two doubles and six home runs was also another single-game club record.

Ranger than fiction
Texas now has the modern MLB record for most runs in a game, and here's how the Rangers' output stacks up with the top performances in other sports.
Sport
Points
Team
Opponent
Date
MLB
30
Rangersat Orioles8/22/2007
NFL
72
Redskinsvs. Giants11/27/1966
NBA
186
Pistonsat Nuggets12/13/1983
NHL
16
Canadiensat Quebec3/30/1920

Saltalamacchia and Vazquez both finished with a career-high seven RBIs, two short of the club record for one game set by Ivan Rodriguez on April 13, 1999. Saltalamacchia and David Murphy tied a club record by scoring five runs, done previously by Pete O'Brien, Luis Alicea and Kevin Mench.

"It was unbelievable," Saltalamacchia said. "That was ridiculous. I've never been in a game like that in my life. It was one of those things. We were just seeing the ball and hitting the ball. You can't help but laugh. It's nothing they did. It's not like they made a lot of errors. It was just ridiculous. Everybody is going to remember it."

Metcalf's grand slam was the first of his career and just his second home run. He had been called up earlier in the day and didn't even get into the game until he replaced shortstop Michael Young defensively in the bottom of the seventh inning.

"It was great to be a part of," Metcalf said. "It was amazing in capital letters."

Amazingly, there was one negative note. The Rangers struck out 11 times, giving them 41 over a three-game stretch. That also tied a club record.

Rangers left-hander Kason Gabbard picked up his second victory for the Rangers despite trailing 3-0 after three innings. He ended up going six, allowing seven hits and a walk and striking out three. He is now 6-1 with a 3.65 ERA overall with both the Rangers and the Boston Red Sox.

Wes Littleton threw three scoreless innings in relief which actually qualified for his first save of the season.

The Rangers wiped out the Orioles three-run lead in the top of the fourth against Orioles starter Daniel Cabrera. Saltalamacchia got the scoring started with a two-run single and Vazquez followed with his first home run, a three-run shot over the right-field wall.

Saltalamacchia then hit a home run to lead off the sixth, the first of 10 hits the Rangers had that inning. That tied a club record set on May 17, 2001, against the Cleveland Indians.

Reliever Brian Burres replaced Cabrera and the Rangers loaded the bases on a single by Vazquez, a walk to Frank Catalanotto and a single by Young. Byrd then crushed one high and deep into the left-field seats for a grand slam, the third of his career.

That gave the Rangers a 10-3 lead but they didn't stop there. Burres struck out Jason Botts, but the Rangers followed with six straight singles to bring home four runs. The Rangers finished with nine runs that inning but weren't even close to being done.

Metcalf entered the game defensively for Young and hit a grand slam in the eighth inning off reliever Rob Bell. Saltalamacchia added a three-run home run in a 10-run inning. This was the sixth time in Major League history that a team has scored at least nine runs in an inning twice in one game.

The Rangers scored six more in the ninth with the help of a two-run double by Botts and a three-run home run by Vazquez. The hits and runs given up were the most in Orioles history and it was also their worst defeat in club history.

"You just have to have a short memory and let it go," Orioles manager Dave Trembley said.

T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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