ARLINGTON, Texas — Scott Feldman allowed three hits in six innings, David Murphy had three hits and an RBI, and the Texas Rangers completed a three-game sweep of the Tampa Bay Rays with a 5-2 victory Sunday night.
Feldman (7-2) gave up two runs, struck out two and walked four to help the Rangers win their fifth straight and finish a 6-3 homestand.
Frank Francisco got three outs for his 14th save in 16 chances.
The Rangers remain tied with the Los Angeles Angels for the AL West lead. Those teams meet in a three-game series beginning Monday night in California.
Tampa Bay dropped its fourth in a row and fell six games behind first-place Boston in the AL East.
Rays starter Matt Garza (6-6) gave up five runs and seven hits in five innings. He struck out seven and walked two. Garza had allowed two runs and 10 hits over 15 innings in consecutive victories, but struggled against the Rangers.
Texas took a 1-0 lead in the first when Marlon Byrd’s infield single drove in Ian Kinsler from third. The Rangers made it 2-0 in the second on Elvis Andrus’ sacrifice fly.
The Rays scored twice on a strange play in third. Tampa Bay had runners on second and third with nobody out when Evan Longoria hit a sacrifice fly that drove in B.J. Upton from third. Carl Crawford went from second to third on the play, then sped home when Rangers catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia threw wildly past third base for an error in an attempt to retire Crawford.
Texas grabbed a 3-2 advantage in the third on Nelson Cruz’s RBI groundout, then took a 5-2 edge in the fourth on consecutive sacrifice flies from Murphy and Byrd.
Rangers GM Jon Daniels said RHP Vicente Padilla’s scheduled start Tuesday night against the Angels will be pushed back, probably to Wednesday night. Daniels said the Rangers will promote RHP Dustin Nippert from the 60-day DL to make Tuesday night’s start. Padilla, who was skipped from a scheduled start Saturday night, experienced right shoulder soreness during a bullpen session Sunday. ... Tampa Bay’s big three run producers — Longoria, Carlos Pena and Ben Zobrist — were a combined 1 for 30 in the three-game series. ... Crawford extended his hitting streak to 13 games with a fifth-inning single.