Arlington, TX – Adam Jones went 2-for-5 with a homer and two RBI, while Miguel Gonzalez put together another effective outing to carry the Baltimore Orioles past the Texas Rangers, 7-4, in the second installment of a three-game series.
Gonzalez (8-3) allowed just one run on eight hits and struck out three without walking a batter over 6 2/3 innings. It was the eighth consecutive quality start for the right-hander, and the Orioles' bats backed him with 17 hits.
"He's been really good," Jones said of Gonzalez. "He goes out there and competes. He's been giving us a great chance to win."
Brian Roberts smacked a two-run single during a two-hit night, Matt Wieters had three hits and Chris Davis went 2-for-5 with an RBI and a run scored for Baltimore, which went 7-for-13 with runners in scoring position.
Both playoff contenders came in with 54 wins, but the Orioles have been playing better of late, winning six of their last seven games.
The Rangers have dropped six of seven after they were a season-high 16 games over .500 following a win at Baltimore on July 9.
They may be looking for another starter after their latest project, Ross Wolf, was knocked around following a short rain delay to start Saturday's game. In his third career start, Wolf (1-3) was charged with seven runs on nine hits and two walks and was pulled after failing to record an out in the third inning.
"It's obvious that we need to pitch better," Texas manager Ron Washington said of his team's recent struggles. "It's obvious that we need to start playing the type of defense we know we can play and it's obvious that we need to start hitting with runners in scoring position."
On a day they inducted future Hall-of-Fame catcher Ivan "Pudge" Rodriguez into their Hall of Fame, the Rangers didn't come to life until the later innings.
Ian Kinsler got Texas on the board with a sacrifice fly in the seventh, and the hosts pounded out four hits and three runs against Tommy Hunter an inning later to pull within 7-4.
Mitch Moreland chipped in an RBI single, David Murphy added a two-run base hit, and the Rangers brought the tying run to the plate in the ninth with a pair of two-out singles.
Jim Johnson, however, closed the door by retiring A.J. Pierzynski on a ground ball to lock down his 35th save.
Nate McLouth opened the game with a single, Nick Markakis worked a one-out walk and Jones and Davis followed with RBI singles to left field.
McLouth scored again in the second frame after legging out a triple and coming in on Manny Machado's base hit to right, and the O's poured it on with four runs in their next turn.
Jones' 20th home run of the season reached Greene's Hill in straightaway center leading off the frame, and a double, walk and single loaded the bases and marked the end of Wolf's brief outing.
Henry Urrutia, in his second career at-bat after getting his contract selected by Triple-A Norfolk earlier Saturday, greeted Joseph Ortiz with an RBI single, and Roberts hit one over the head of Nelson Cruz in right field to plate a pair for a 7-0 Baltimore cushion.
The Orioles have taken four of the six meetings against the Rangers this year, and regardless of Sunday's result, they will win the season series for just the second time in the last nine seasons (2-6-1) ... Urrutia, signed by the Orioles on July 11, 2012, became the 12th Cuban-born player to see action with Baltimore ... Texas' bullpen combined for seven scoreless innings and has given up just one run over the past 10 games (31 2/3 innings) ... The Rangers will turn to Martin Perez in Sunday's finale while Baltimore counters with Chris Tillman.