Shin-Soo Choo hit a solo home run and scored four times to back seven strong innings from Matt Moore as the Texas Rangers rolled to a 7-2 win over the Tampa Bay Rays on Tuesday in the second game of a three-game series at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla.
Moore (1-3), who was drafted by the Rays in 2007 and played for Tampa Bay from 2011-2016, faced the Rays for the first time in his career and dominated his former team. He did not allow an earned run in seven innings, striking out six and walking two to earn his first win for the Rangers in his fourth start. His ERA dropped from 8.76 to 5.59 in the process.
Yonny Chirinos (0-1) took the loss for Tampa Bay upon surrendering six runs, all earned, on seven hits in 5 2/3 innings with three walks and three strikeouts.
The runs Chirinos allowed Tuesday were the first of his four-game major league career; he entered the game with a 14 1/3 inning scoreless streak, the longest such streak for a Rays pitcher to begin his career.
The Rangers managed 12 hits off three Tampa Bay pitchers, with Isiah Kiner-Falefa leading the way with three singles and a double.
Tampa Bay recorded eight hits, including three by Adeiny Hechavarria, and a solo home run by Wilson Ramos in the ninth inning.
Texas scored runs in the first two innings, as Adrian Beltre’s sacrifice fly drove home Choo in the first and Choo’s sacrifice fly plated Drew Robinson in the second.
Tampa Bay answered in the third inning as C.J. Cron’s single off of Beltre’s glove chased home Daniel Robertson and cut the Rangers’ lead to 2-1.
Texas broke open the game with three runs in the fifth. Another Beltre sacrifice fly scored Choo again before Ronald Guzman doubled to drive home Nomar Mazara and Joey Gallo.
Choo ripped a home run to deep right-center in the sixth to chase Chirinos and boost the advantage to 6-1. Mazara’s two-out, RBI single off Hunter Wood in the eighth capped the Texas scoring.
The two teams play the rubber game of the series Wednesday afternoon as the Rangers send left-hander Cole Hamels (1-2, 5.06 ERA) to the mound to oppose Tampa Bay right-hander Jake Faria (0-1, 8.18).
—Field Level Media