DETROIT (AP) - Randy Wolf was victimized by one bad inning in his return to the major leagues.
Wolf allowed five straight singles in the third inning, when the Texas Rangers scored four runs en route to a 5-3 victory over the Detroit Tigers on Saturday night.
Yovani Gallardo took a shutout into the seventh inning, and the Tigers didn’t score until Ian Kinsler’s three-run homer with two outs in the ninth. Gallardo (10-9) allowed eight hits in six-plus innings.
Wolf (0-1) allowed three earned runs and nine hits in seven innings, acquitting himself fairly well in his first major league start since June 2014. Wolf, who turned 39 on Saturday, was acquired by Detroit in a trade with Toronto on Thursday, as the Tigers tried to shore up a rotation that is missing injured starters Anibal Sanchez and Daniel Norris.
“I bring up the average age a little bit,” Wolf joked. “I feel like I could give good innings, help this team with some stability. That’s really my goal. I’m not going to come in here and have a sub-1.00 ERA and be amazing, but I feel like if I give as many solid innings in a game as I possibly can, that helps out not only the rotation, but the bullpen as well.”
Wolf pitched well aside from that one inning, and he certainly showed his sense of humor after the game.
“I may be 29 years old, but I’m glad I was nervous,” Wolf joked, cutting 10 years off his age. “If I wasn’t nervous, then I would realize that I need to retire.”
Rougned Odor hit a solo homer for Texas in the ninth.
With one out in the third, Delino DeShields, Shin-Soo Choo, Prince Fielder, Adrian Beltre and Mike Napoli all hit singles, giving the Rangers a 3-0 lead. Elvis Andrus then added an RBI groundout.
Beltre had three hits for the Rangers. Miguel Cabrera had two for the Tigers, raising his average to .365.
The Tigers had at least one baserunner in each of the first seven innings but didn’t score until the ninth, when Texas brought in closer Shawn Tolleson in a non-save situation. Kinsler greeted Tolleson with a homer to left, but Tyler Collins then struck out - with Cabrera on deck - to end the game.
Detroit reliever Guido Knudson made his major league debut in the ninth. He struck out the first batter he faced, but then Odor connected for his 10th home run of the season.
“It was supposed to be inside down, and it ended up, well, sort of middle up,” Knudson said. “That’s the worst place to throw a pitch to a lefty.”
Beltre played his 2,527th game, trying Julio Franco’s record for a player born in the Dominican Republic.
In the ninth inning, Jose Iglesias hit a chopper toward third, and Beltre had no choice but to let it roll and hope it would go foul. When it didn’t, Beltre playfully gave the ball a gentle kick into foul ground, but the umps weren’t fooled.
Rangers manager Jeff Banister spent some time earlier Saturday with new Michigan football coach Jim Harbaugh.
“Spent about 35, 40 minutes in his office, talking coaching,” Banister said. “I try to learn as much as I possibly can from guys that have been at the pinnacle.”
Rangers: With a day off Monday, Texas will skip LHP Martin Perez’s turn in the rotation Wednesday in an effort to limit the 24-year-old’s innings. Perez had elbow surgery last year.
Tigers: Sanchez is on the DL with a right rotator cuff strain. He said he’s been working to get the inflammation out of the shoulder, and there is no set timetable yet for when he will resume throwing.
Texas LHP Cole Hamels (6-8) faces Detroit LHP Matt Boyd (1-1) on Sunday.
Copyright © 2022 The Washington Times, LLC.