Rangers Bats Help Wilson Overcome Poor Night

So much for that potential pitcher's duel, which was all right with Texas Rangers starter C.J. Wilson even after his worst start of the season.

"It gives me a lot of confidence actually," Wilson said. "I had an off night but everybody else had a great night."

Michael Young had three hits and drove in three runs, including the tiebreaking RBI single for the Rangers in an 8-7 victory Tuesday night that gave the AL West leaders a sweep in their two-game set against the Los Angeles Angels.

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Elvis Andrus had a one-out double in the sixth off Trevor Bell (1-1) for his third hit, then scored on Young's bloop to right.

Wilson and Angels starter Jered Weaver both allowed seven runs without making it out of the fifth inning.

"It's been a while since I had one like this. I feel terrible," Weaver said. "The guys picked me up and got some runs for me and I let them down. ... When your offense picks you up and you keep giving up runs, it's disappointing. I have to put the blame somewhere and you can put the blame on me."

Torii Hunter and Juan Rivera both hit two-run homers in the Angels' five-run fourth that was their highest-scoring inning of the season and made it 5-2.

Weaver left with a 7-5 lead but with two runners on who scored when Nelson Cruz greeted Bell with a two-run double.

Darren O'Day (1-1), the second of five Texas relievers who combined for 4 2-3 scoreless innings, struck out two in his inning. Hard-throwing rookie Neftali Feliz worked a perfect ninth with two strikeouts for his 11th save in 13 chances.

"Today was a pretty strange game, two starting pitchers who had been throwing the ball extremely well, kind of battling out there," Young said. "Our bullpen was the story of the game."

Young, Ian Kinsler and Vladimir Guerrero homered for the Rangers, who recovered from being swept in three games at Toronto over the weekend by winning their first two games of the season against the three-time defending division champs.

"To be able to come back and get back on track is probably the biggest thing," Kinsler said.

Guerrero was almost on a knee with full extension of his arms when he homered leading off the fourth on a pitch almost in the dirt. The ball barely cleared the 14-foot wall in left, falling in a small gap between the fence and a video screen that initially made it look the ball was still in play and brought manager Mike Scioscia out to get an explanation from the umpires.

"That was freakish," Kinsler said. "There are not too many guys that play this game that can do that."

Guerrero's eighth homer this season was his first ever against his former team, giving him homers against all current 30 major league teams. The Angels didn't re-sign the 35-year-old Guerrero after he helped lead them to five division titles the past six years.

Wilson hadn't allowed a home run since last July 9 until Hunter's homer that gave the Angels a 3-2 lead. That was a homerless span of nearly 88 innings over 44 appearances for the former reliever who earned a rotation spot this spring.

Wilson led the AL with a 1.48 ERA, but that rose to 2.55 after his 4 1-3 innings with five strikeouts. He had given up only eight earned runs in 48 2-3 innings his first seven starts.

The left-hander faced the minimum 10 hitters until Howie Kendrick had a one-out single in the fourth, stole second and moved to third on catcher Matt Treanor's throwing error. Bobby Abreau then had an RBI single before the homers.

"It was just a lack of experience in that situation," said Wilson, who said he tried to too much the second time through the order. "I tried to go up a gear. ... The rule of the road, stay in your groove."

Weaver got only one more out than Wilson and inflated his ERA from 2.47 to 3.40. The right-hander allowed nine hits and walked three.

Kinsler's first homer of the season got the Rangers within 7-5 in the fifth, then Weaver was gone after allowing consecutive singles to Guerrero and Josh Hamilton.

"From the start,Weave looked like he was having trouble with command of his fastball. When he did get ahead, he was having trouble putting people away," Scioscia said. "They have a deep lineup that if you don't make good pitches, they'll let you know."

NOTES: Texas led 2-0 after Andrus singled and Young hit his fourth homer in the third. ... Andrus is hitting .414 over his past 18 games (29 of 70) to raise his average from .246 to .333. He also scored three runs. ... Angels C Mike Napoli had thrown out only four of 29 attempted base stealers before getting Cruz and Kinsler in consecutive innings. Julio Borbon stole a base in the eighth. ... Hunter homered in both games, and has six for the season.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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