ARLINGTON, Texas — With his team having lost four straight and 12 of its last 18, Boston Red Sox manager Bobby Valentine said the formula for their success is simple.
“Good pitching and timely hitting,” Valentine said after his team’s 9-1 loss to the Texas Rangers on Monday night. “We’re due for it.”
Boston, which has been outscored 33-7 by the Rangers in three games this season, had 10 hits but left eight men on base.
Jarrod Saltalamacchia’s home run in the second inning was the Red Sox’s only run. Saltalamacchia had Boston’s only extra-base hits as he added a double in the seventh inning. Dustin Pedroia went 3-for-4.
“Our hitters are having a tough time of it,” Valentine said. “It was good to see Dustin get three hits tonight. This could be the beginning of something better.”
Scott Feldman (4-6), starting after Roy Oswalt was scratched with back tightness, kept the Red Sox in check for seven innings. Feldman made a strong case for becoming a starter for Texas, which learned shortly before the game that Colby Lewis will miss the rest of the season because of a torn flexor tendon in his right elbow that will require surgery.
“He kept the ball down and worked off the corners,” Boston third baseman Will Middlebrooks said of Feldman . “He didn’t leave anything over the middle that we could hit.
“We need some timely hits,” Middlebrooks said. “That’s baseball. There’s no panic here.”
Meanwhile, Texas’ bats were booming as the Rangers scored all nine runs in two innings.
Ian Kinsler went 3-for-4 and Craig Gentry went 2-for-4 with an RBI for Texas. Josh Hamilton and Mike Napoli both had two RBIs in the Rangers’ first home game since July 8.
In the third, Texas scored three earned runs against Boston starter Felix Doubront (10-5). Gentry singled and Kinsler walked, then a double steal put the two at second and third. Elvis Andrus run-scoring singled to stretch his hitting streak to 11 games. Pedroia overthrew first base to let Kinsler score, snapping a 65-game errorless streak, the longest single-season streak of Pedroia’s career. Hamilton drove in a run with a double and Michael Young’s one-out single scored Hamilton to make it 4-1.
In the sixth, Napoli hit his third home run in as many games, a two-run shot that traveled 416 feet to left field that made it 6-1. That hit knocked out Doubront, who pitched five innings and gave up six earned runs and eight hits.
Frankin Morales relieved Doubront and gave up three straight hits to Brandon Snyder (double), Gentry and Kinsler. Gentry’s single drove in Snyder, and Gentry scored on an error by Boston left fielder Carl Crawford after Kinsler’s single. Hamilton hit a sacrifice fly for a 9-1 lead.
NOTES: Valentine considered having struggling LHP Jon Lester skip his scheduled Saturday start against the Yankees, but he said after Monday’s game that Lester will start Saturday. Lester (5-8, 5.46) has lost his last three starts, giving up 21 earned runs in 12 1-3 innings. He allowed a career-worst 11 earned runs in four innings of Sunday’s 15-7 loss to Toronto. . Monday was Valentine’s first time managing a regular-season game in Arlington against his former club. From 1985-1992, Valentine managed more games (1,186) and has more wins (581) than any manager in Rangers history. . Rangers 1B Mitch Moreland began an injury-rehab assignment Monday night at Triple-A Round Rock, and is expected to return to the Rangers for Sunday’s game against Chicago. He has been on the DL since June 22 because of a stranded left hamstring. Manager Ron Washington said the plan is for Moreland to play Monday and Tuesday for Round Rock, then return to Arlington on Wednesday to be with his wife, Susannah, who is expecting their first child. Moreland would move his rehab assignment to Double-A Frisco Friday and Saturday.