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44-45 - Adrian Beltre’s blast helps Rangers open second half with a bang

The Rangers take the second half opener with a 5-3 come-from-behind victory over the Royals

MLB: Texas Rangers at Kansas City Royals Jay Biggerstaff-USA TODAY Sports

Texas started the second half of the season by getting no-hit by Royals starter Jason Hammel for the first five innings of tonight’s game. That’s...not how you want to kick things off as you try to convince management to believe in one more October ride.

Shoulda-been All-Star Elvis Andrus broke up the no-hitter with one out in the top sixth. Nomar Mazara followed with a single and then the wheels fell off for Hammels.

Hit #3 on the night for the Rangers and #2,979 for Adrian Beltre came with two on and Texas down 3-0. It was a dong shot to center field to tie the game. Adrian Beltre later collected hit #2,980. Not getting to watch Adrian Beltre play baseball this week was excruciating.

With the game tied, the Rangers lifted Joey Gallo in favor of Mike Napoli with a runner on and a lefty on the mound. Napoli rewarded this decision by hitting one 450 feet and giving the Rangers an eventual 5-3 win.

The win was a good way to kick of the second half as the Royals have been hot of late and are directly ahead of the Rangers in the race for a playoff spot. Texas is now just a half game back of KC.

Depending on what happens in Anaheim between the Rays and Angels, the Rangers will have gained a game on a few teams ahead of them.

Player of the Game: Well, as usual the player of all games is Adrian Beltre but let’s talk about Martin Perez. Perez allowed a two-out, two-run home run to Alcides Escobar in the bottom of the second inning which I did not know was possible.

That got folks chirping about Mental Midget Marteen ruining another night for Texas. Instead, Perez finished the night going seven innings and allowing just one more run on a Jorge Bonifacio single in the fifth.

Of course, that would have been the back-breaking run if Yu Darvish had been the pitcher of record but the Rangers eventual realized that Darvish had been at the All-Star Game and not off fishing over the break and put up some runs for Perez.

In the end, Perez was solid and kept Texas in a game long enough for them to come back and win.

Up Next: The Rangers and Royals play an hour earlier tomorrow night beginning at 6:15 with a battle of southpaws between Cole Hamels and Danny Duffy.