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Rangers finally break their Oakland skid

The SportsXchange

OAKLAND, Calif. -- They took 10 innings to do it and gave manager Ron Washington's heart a workout in the final moments Tuesday night, but the Texas Rangers finally found a way to beat the Oakland A's at the O.co Coliseum.

Adrian Beltre and Mitch Moreland launched solo home runs in the top of the 10th inning off reliever Chris Resop, powering the Rangers to a 6-5 victory and snapping Texas' five-game losing streak at the Coliseum.

Moreland, who also blasted a two-run shot off A's right-hander Bartolo Colon in the fourth inning, had his fifth career two-homer game.

The Rangers took a 6-4 lead into the bottom of the 10th, and closer Joe Nathan gave up run before securing the save, his 12th of the season.

"Every time you come here and every time you play them, they're just gritty," Moreland said. "They're going to grind out every at-bat, every pitch. That team is trying to find a way to make something happen, and it seems like they feed off of each other. It's pretty contagious once they get going over there. We were able to get a win out of it. It was a big night for us. Hopefully we can keep it rolling tomorrow."

The A's nearly pulled off a stunning comeback in the bottom of the 10th.

With one out, Derek Norris and John Jaso worked walks off Nathan, and Seth Smith ripped an RBI double to left-center, cutting the lead to 6-5. Nathan intentionally walked Brandon Moss, loading the bases. Then he struck out Daric Barton on a nasty slider and retired pinch hitter Eric Sogard on a sharp ground ball to second baseman Ian Kinsler.

Nathan said it was just a typical night on the job.

"Not saying normal's calm, but normal," Nathan said. "Normal game, normal situation like that. Get myself into a one-run game. Obviously we got to set up a double play and get a big strikeout on a guy that doesn't chase a whole lot in Barton. He usually doesn't go out of the zone much. (It was) a spot where I was really just looking for a groundball if I can get it. I was fortunate to get a strikeout.

"Actually, I probably lost a (heart) beat on the (Sogard) ground ball. I thought it might have had a chance to get through the hole. Great jump on Ian's part, great play to end it."

With Nathan in, the Rangers' bullpen was quiet. Washington said all he could do was sit back, watch his closer work and try to stay calm.

"That was right where we wanted to be," he said. "There wasn't much I could do. I just need to keep my heart rate low."

By the time Resop imploded, A's manager Bob Melvin was in the clubhouse. Melvin was thrown out of the game in the bottom of the eighth by first base umpire D.J. Reyburn after Barton was called out on a close play.

Melvin said Resop (1-1) is going through a rough stretch.

"It's worse than rough," Resop said. "It's tough. I'm not going to sit here and lie. It's never fun when your team goes out there and they bust their butt for -- I mean, really, they played 10 innings tonight -- and we lost by one run. But you hate to be the guy to let your team down. Feels terrible."

A's third baseman Josh Donaldson matched his career high with four hits, going 4-for-5 with two doubles, but he couldn't celebrate.

The A's trailed 3-2 before they scored twice in the bottom of the sixth.

Donaldson roped a leadoff double to left -- his third straight hit off Derek Holland -- moved to third on Norris' groundout and scored on Luke Montz's sacrifice fly. Seth Smith singled to center, knocking Holland out of the game, and Nate Freiman greeted reliever Robbie Ross with an RBI double to left, giving the A's their first lead.

The Rangers pulled even with a run in the eighth off reliever Ryan Cook. Elvis Andrus led off with a single, moved to third on Beltre's one-out single and scored on Nelson Cruz's sacrifice fly.

Colon has 18 career wins against the Rangers, but he settled for a no-decision Tuesday. He allowed three runs on four hits over six innings.

Holland gave up four runs on eight hits and lasted 5 2/3 innings, but he didn't figure in the decision, either.

Tanner Scheppers, who threw two perfect innings, earned the win, improving to 3-0.

NOTES: LHP Brett Anderson (sprained right ankle) threw a bullpen session Tuesday and took part in pitchers' fielding practice. He's eligible to come off the disabled list Wednesday. Melvin has yet to decide where he'll slot him in the rotation. ... A's OF Chris Young (strained left quad) played another game Tuesday at extended spring training in Arizona and will return to Oakland on Wednesday, but Melvin said he probably won't be immediately activated. "We'll take a look at him," Melvin said. ... Barring a setback, A's CF Coco Crisp (strained left hamstring) will be activated from the disabled list Wednesday. ... Rangers C A.J. Pierzynski (strained right oblique muscle) took swings during a soft-toss session before Tuesday's game. "I didn't see him holding back," Washington said. Pierzynski probably will play one or two rehab games before being activated, according to Washington.
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