ARLINGTON (AP) — Kelvim Escobar won his 10th game after being snubbed again for a spot in the All-Star game and the Los Angeles Angels avoided a three-game sweep with a 5-2 victory over the Texas Rangers on Thursday night.
Left off the initial American League roster released Sunday, Escobar had another chance to make the team. But Red Sox reliever Hideki Okajima beat out Escobar and three others in Internet voting that ended Thursday to determine the final player.
Escobar (10-3) allowed one run and three hits over seven innings, with eight strikeouts and three walks. The right-hander is 4-0 in six starts since the start of June.
Maicer Izturis had a two-run triple and scored after a double for the AL West-leading Angels, who had lost six of eight. Vladimir Guerrero, who will make his fifth All-Star start in San Francisco next week, extended his season-best hitting streak to nine games with an RBI single in the first.
The Rangers are in last place, 16 games behind Los Angeles, but are 5-0-1 their last six series. They took two of three from Los Angeles after splitting a four-game set last weekend at Boston, which has the best record in the majors.
Robinson Tejeda (5-8) lost for the fifth time in his last six decisions and has a 9.14 ERA in that span. He gave up four runs and six hits over 5 1-3 innings.
Jerry Hairston led off the Texas first with a double, advanced on a sacrifice bunt by Ramon Vazquez and scored on Michael Young’s single. Young, the MVP of last year’s All-Star game who will play in his fourth straight midsummer classic, has 23 singles over 18 games since his last extra-base hit on June 15.
Texas had one more hit and got only one other runner past first base against Escobar, when Vazquez hit a two-out triple in the sixth before Young hit a comebacker to the mound.
Garrett Anderson had a leadoff single in the fifth and scored the go-ahead run on a single by Jose Molina. Izturis came home on a sacrifice fly by rookie Reggie Willits, and then had his triple in the sixth.
After heavy rains earlier Thursday, the game started on time — the field wasn’t uncovered until about 45 minutes before the first pitch. A light rain began to fall in the fifth inning, and continued for two innings, but the game was never delayed.