Napoli, Gallo homer for 10th straight victory

Napoli, Gallo homer for 10th straight victory

DETROIT -- The Rangers rolled into the Motor City on Friday and continued their winning ways, propelled by Mike Napoli and Joey Gallo home runs for their 10th consecutive victory in a 5-3 decision over the Tigers.

The Rangers' winning streak is the longest in the Majors this year, the fourth longest in club history and their longest since capturing 12 in a row in 2011. The club record is 14, set in 1991. The Rangers have also taken seven in a row at Comerica Park, their longest streak in Detroit.

"Any time you win, it's a good night," Napoli said. "We're playing good baseball, getting good pitching, timely hitting and playing good defense. That's how you want to do it. Winning on the road and getting that first one is nice on the road trip."

Tigers starter Daniel Norris (2-3) tied his season high with eight strikeouts, but two walks and a hit batter set up a two-run third inning that put him behind for good. Napoli's fourth-inning solo homer was one of just three hits off Norris through five frames before four hits chased him in the sixth.

"I'm not overly concerned about the home runs," Tigers manager Brad Ausmus said. "It's more the command -- the loss of command -- that one inning."

Norris still a work in progress

Andrus draws a bases-loaded walk

Rangers starter Nick Martinez (1-2) allowed a lone run, unearned, over five innings for his first win as a starter since Aug. 5, 2015. He was 0-5 with a 6.40 ERA over his previous 11 starts. Rangers closer Matt Bush survived a ninth-inning rally in which the Tigers sent the potential winning run to the plate for his fifth save.

"It doesn't mean anything in particular," Martinez said. "I'm just going about my business and doing my work. I felt good tonight and we had a good game plan."

Martinez's solid outing

Napoli, Gallo get big homers vs. lefty: Napoli and Gallo have both struggled against left-handers this year, and both struck out twice against Norris. But Napoli gave the Rangers a 3-0 lead in the fourth with a solo shot, and Gallo added a two-run homer off Norris in the sixth.

"We had some guys who are supposed to do damage against left-handers come through for us tonight," Rangers manager Jeff Banister said. More >

Statcast: Gallo's 439-foot homer

Tigers miss chance to tie it: The Tigers' offense, which left the bases loaded in the fourth inning, had a chance in the ninth against Bush. Tyler Collins fouled off four consecutive fastballs at 98 mph or harder to draw a two-out walk and extend the game for J.D. Martinez, whose infield single set up an Elvis Andrus throwing error to plate a run. Alex Avila stepped to the plate as the potential winning run but struck out.

"Avila's been swinging as well as anyone in baseball," Ausmus said, "and he's left-handed facing a right-handed pitcher, so [pinch-hitting with Miguel Cabrera] didn't cross my mind."

Bush K's Avila for the save

"Right now, he knows one gear. I think that's what you learn, the longer you play -- especially as a starting pitcher -- that there's gotta be a little bit of pace to your game. You want to take a little bit of the bull out of the china shop." -- Ausmus, on Norris' struggle controlling his energy

Thirteen Major League players have had two or more "barreled" balls go for outs in the same game. Four of those 13 are Tigers, including Avila on Friday. Avila flied out to the left-field fence in the second inning, then to deep center in the fourth.

Banister challenged a caught stealing in the seventh inning, believing Delino DeShields had beaten Ian Kinsler's tag at second base. After review, the call stood, leaving the bases empty with two outs.

McCann gets DeShields stealing

Rangers: Right-hander A.J. Griffin faces the Tigers at 6:15 p.m. CT on Saturday. Griffin has won all four of his decisions this season, and the Rangers are 6-0 in his six starts.

Tigers: Justin Verlander (3-3, 4.47 ERA) continues his long and varied history against the Rangers when he takes the mound at 7:15 p.m. ET on Saturday for the middle game of the series. He's 9-5 with a 2.71 ERA in 17 career regular-season starts versus Texas, not counting their matchups in the 2011 American League Championship Series.

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Jason Beck has covered the Tigers for since 2002. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and Facebook.

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

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