San Diego, CA – Matt Harrison tossed six strong innings and David Murphy hit a two-run single to help the Texas Rangers take a 2-1 win over the San Diego Padres in the opener of a three-game set.
Harrison (9-3), who was coming off consecutive scoreless starts, won his fifth straight decision as he gave up just one run on six hits with two walks and four strikeouts for the Rangers, who have won four straight and seven of eight. Elvis Andrus and Adrian Beltre scored in the win.
"I thought he was pretty good," Texas manager Ron Washington said of Harrison's outing. "Things could've gotten worst in that first, but he gave up minimal damage and began to settle down."
Texas outfielder Josh Hamilton was not in the starting lineup and was available to pinch-hit, but did not make an appearance. He took batting practice on Monday and said he will be in the lineup for Tuesday.
He has been out of the lineup since last Thursday with an intestinal virus that caused him to be hospitalized. He was released from the hospital on Saturday.
Jason Marquis (2-1) also pitched well, but it was not enough as he suffered the loss in a two-run, five-hit outing. He walked three and struck out a season-high 10 batters over seven innings.
Chase Headley went 3-for-5 with an RBI in the loss for the Padres, who have dropped three of their last four.
All the runs in this game came in the first inning.
Andrus singled with one out and stole second. After Michael Young grounded out, consecutive walks to Beltre and Nelson Cruz loaded the bases. Murphy followed with a two-run single up the middle for a 2-0 lead.
"I didn't execute early on like I wanted to," Marquis said of his opening frame. "I put myself in a hole early, put a couple guys on, and Murphy found a hole."
San Diego got one back in the bottom of the frame as Chris Denorfia singled, Cameron Maybin followed with a base hit and Headley doubled home Denorfia to make it a 2-1 game. Harrison got out of the jam by retiring the next three batters.
Harrison retired the Padres in order in the fourth and fifth, but got into trouble in the sixth.
Headley led off with a single and Carlos Quentin followed suit. After Jesus Guzman flied out and Everth Cabrera struck out, Nick Hundley walked to load the bases. Yonder Alonso, though, grounded out to end the frame.
Mark Lowe pitched a 1-2-3 seventh and Mike Adams got out of a two-on, two-out jam in the eighth when he got Mark Kotsay to fly out.
Joe Nathan came on to close in the ninth and gave up a pair of two-out singles to Denorfia and John Baker, but then got Headley to ground out for his 14th save of the season.
Marquis' fourth strikeout of the game, Ian Kinsler in the second inning, was the 1,000th of his career. He became the 49th active pitcher to reach that milestone...San Diego batted just 1-for-9 with runners in scoring position and left 11 men on base...After the first inning, Texas had just one runner reach third base the rest of the game, Leonys Martin in the second inning...The last time these teams met was in 2009 when San Diego took two of three in Texas...Marquis fell 1-2 against the Rangers.