Perez, Rangers keep reeling Mets under wraps
NEW YORK -- Martin Perez snapped a four-start losing streak by allowing just one run over eight strong innings Wednesday afternoon as the Texas Rangers cruised to a 5-1 win over the New York Mets at Citi Field.
The Rangers (54-59) salvaged a split of the two-game series. The Mets (50-61), who have not swept a series at home all season, lost for the eighth time in 10 games.
Perez (6-10) was initially scheduled to start Friday but was pressed into duty Wednesday due to a rotation reshuffling resulting from Andrew Cashner being scratched Tuesday with a stiff neck. Perez gave up three hits and walked none while striking out five in his longest outing since Aug. 2, 2015.
The 26-year-old left-hander, who had a 9.41 ERA in his previous four starts, didn't allow a hit until Wilmer Flores led off the fifth with a home run.
Alex Claudio tossed a perfect ninth inning to end the game.
Joey Gallo hit a two-run homer for the Rangers and reached base four times while Shin Soo-Choo reached base five times in six plate appearances (double, single, three walks).
Jose Reyes and Amed Rosario each had a single for the Mets.
The Rangers produced all the offense they'd need during a three-run first, when they batted around against Mets right-hander Rafael Montero (1-8). Choo led off the game with a double, went to third on Nomar Mazara's single and scored on a balk by Montero. Gallo followed with a long two-run homer.
Elvis Andrus built a run in the second, when he reached on a fielder's choice, stole second and third and beat the throw home on Mazara's grounder to second.
The Rangers scored their final run in the sixth, when Mazara delivered a leadoff single, went to second on Adrian Beltre's single, took third on Gallo's walk and trotted home when Drew Robinson coaxed a walk.
Montero allowed four runs on five hits and three walks while striking out five over three innings.
NOTES: The Rangers recalled IF Tyler Smith from Triple-A Round Rock and optioned RHP Nick Martinez to the same affiliate. Smith will provide infield insurance with 2B Rougned Odor (left foot) day-to-day. Odor, who was hit by a pitch on Tuesday, struck out as a pinch-hitter Wednesday. ... The Rangers announced LHP Cole Hamels will start Friday's series opener against the Houston Astros. RHP Andrew Cashner, who was scratched Tuesday due to a stiff neck, is a candidate to start Saturday. ... Mets INF Neil Walker started at third base for the first time since June 11, 2010. ... Mets RHP Hansel Robles tossed three innings for the first time this season and the fourth time in his career.