ARLINGTON, Texas -- The Texas Rangers used three home runs, including a grand slam by Nelson Cruz to defeat in-state rival Houston Astros 10-5 on Friday night to make a winner out of rookie Nick Tepesch for the first time in nine starts.
Cruz's bases-loaded slam in the second was sandwiched between two-run shots by David Murphy and Adrian Beltre in the first and fourth innings.
Tepesch (4-6) worked five innings, giving up four runs, all in the sixth, on seven hits with a career-high nine strikeouts.
Houston catcher Jason Castro was 3-for- with a run-scoring single in the Astros' four-run sixth inning.
Beltre's homer chased Houston starter Lucas Harrell (5-9), who struggled with his command in issuing six walks in 3 2/3 innings.
Harrell walked four in the first two innings, including two straight to precede Cruz's slam.
Leonys Martin, who was 2-for-3 with a triple and a run scored, drove in Mitch Moreland with a run-scoring single in the bottom of the fifth to make the score 10-0
Houston finally got to Tepesch in the sixth and tried to get back in the game.
Jose Altuve led off with a single to left. Brett Wallace followed with a walk. Castro drove in Altuve and scored on Chris Carter's two-run double.
Castro scored his second run of the game in the eighth.
Tepesch's strikeout total eclipsed a career high he set on May 12 against the Astros.
Russ Wolf relieved Tepesch in the sixth and pitched three innings, giving up three hits and one unearned run. Jason Frasor worked a scoreless ninth for Texas, retiring the Astros in order.
Frasor has retired 11 of 12 hitters he's faced in his last four appearances.
Ian Kinsler reached base four times, including three walks and a single, and was officially 1-for-2 in five plate appearances.
NOTES: Temperatures remained relatively mild in Texas terms. Tepesch's first pitch was made under clear skies and 94 degrees. ... Murphy's home run accounted for the Rangers' first runs in the first inning in 26 games. Texas had been outscored this season 40-19 in the first inning entering Friday's game. ... Harrell threw 103 pitches 3 2/3 innings. ... Cruz became the fifth Ranger with at least six regular-season grand slams. Rafael Palmeiro and Juan Gonzalez each had seven. Dean Palmer and Rusty Greer both had six. ... Beltre hit his third home run in two games after not hitting one in almost a month. ... Rangers outfielder Martin carried a string of 16 straight successful stolen base attempts into the game. ... The Rangers are 5-1 against the Astros this season and have won nine of the past 10 meetings between the teams. ... The game marks the Astros' first in Arlington as a member of the American League. ... New Astros president Reid Ryan was a 17th-round draft pick of the Rangers in 1994 and played two seasons in the organization. He is in Arlington for the series.