SEATTLE — Former Texas prospect Blake Beavan shutdown the Rangers for eight innings, Texas second baseman Ian Kinsler made a costly throwing error that led to three Seattle runs and the Mariners beat the Rangers 4-0 on Friday night.
Texas missed an opportunity to pick up a game on the Angels after they were handed an 8-3 defeat in Baltimore. Instead, Texas’ lead in the AL West remained at 31/2 games.
Most of that was due to Beavan (5-5), who allowed just four hits and struck out three. Closer Brandon League pitched the ninth in a non-save situation, but finished off Seattle’s 10th shutout this season.
Seattle scored three times in the third thanks to Kinsler’s error. Casper Wells hit his 11th homer leading off the seventh inning, his first since Aug. 21.
While Kinsler’s mistake was costly, the Rangers bats didn’t help starter C.J. Wilson. After scoring at least seven runs in its past six games, Texas didn’t get its first hit until the third inning and only once got a runner into scoring position.
Wilson (16-7) was trying to join Jered Weaver in a tie for third most wins in the American League.
Beavan hasn’t used the strikeout much since coming up from Triple-A Tacoma at the beginning of July, but he liberally used his defense. Beavan got 11 fly ball outs taking advantage of Seattle’s vast outfield and a cool night.
The only time Texas threatened came in the sixth with consecutive singles by Endy Chavez and Kinsler. After failing to get a sacrifice bunt laid down, Elvis Andrus then hit into a 6-4-3 double play nicely turned by Brendan Ryan and Dustin Ackley. Beavan jammed Josh Hamilton into popping up to end the inning.
Adrian Beltre also saw his 19-game hitting streak come to an end after two fly outs and a strikeout.
Beavan retired the final eight he faced, but manger Eric Wedge went to League for the ninth even with Beavan having thrown just 95 pitches. League struck out the side, getting Kinsler and Hamilton swinging and Andrus looking.
Kinsler’s error was his 11th of the season and came with two outs in the third. He charged a slow chopper from Ackley, who raced up the first base line, and he had time to make the throw but it sailed wide of Mitch Moreland and allowed Wells to score from second.
It was the beginning of an odd sequence.
The next batter, Miguel Olivo, then saw Wilson dump a curveball at his feet and bounce past catcher Yorvit Torrealba allowing Ryan to score. Olivo later singled to keep the inning going.
Then it was Mike Carp’s turn for some wackiness. Wilson got Carp to his a grounder back up the middle and shortstop Andrus was in perfect position to make the play. The ball never got to him as it hit second base and caromed the opposite way Andrus was moving.
Wilson ended up throwing 18 extra pitches in the inning and was eventually done after 6 1-3 innings. Wilson had won six of his previous seven starts, and only one of the four runs Seattle scored were earned. He struck out eight and his ERA for September was lowered to 0.92.