Arlington, TX – Adrian Beltre finished 4-for-5 with three RBI and Derek Holland tossed eight scoreless innings, as Texas downed Boston, 7-0, in the opener of a three-game series.
Ian Kinsler added three hits and drove in a run, with Elvis Andrus and Nelson Cruz contributing two hits and an RBI apiece for the Rangers, who had dropped four of five coming in but managed to blank the BoSox, who entered play with the best record in the majors (20-8) along with the best road mark at 9-3.
Holland (2-2) struck out nine and surrendered six hits and one walk, then Derek Lowe finished the game with a perfect ninth.
"I thought my slider was real good today," said Holland. "I didn't use too many curveballs. I kept my defense on their toes. Those guys are making some outstanding plays for me."
Jacoby Ellsbury hit safely twice for the Red Sox, who lost for the third time in their last 10. Felix Doubront (3-1) was tagged in defeat for 12 hits and six runs over just 3 2/3 frames.
Ahead by a run, Texas extended its lead in the fourth. Mitch Moreland and Kinsler hit back-to-back one-out singles before an Andrus hit made it 2-0. Lance Berkman walked to load the bases ahead of a three-run double by Beltre that signaled Doubront's exit. Alex Wilson promptly served up an RBI single to Cruz for a six-run spread.
Kinsler's run-scoring double pushed the Rangers' edge to 7-0 in the fifth and Holland did the rest.
He stranded two runners in the sixth by inducing a Dustin Pedroia groundout, then worked around singles from Jonny Gomes and Ellsbury in the seventh and eighth innings, respectively, to keep the visitors off the board.
Jeff Baker kept the home second alive with a two-out double, Moreland singled to put two in scoring position, and Texas led 1-0 on Craig Gentry's infield hit.
"It was definitely a big game for us," said Moreland. "It was a good way to start the series. That's a good team over there so we wanted to come out and set the tone and I feel like we did that."
Texas has won the season series over Boston in each of the last three years, and has racked up a 19-10 mark against the Red Sox since 2010 ... The Rangers rapped out a season-best 18 hits, while Holland's nine K's were also a season high ... Holland improved to 5-1 with a 2.41 ERA in six career starts against Boston ... Boston's David Ortiz had an infield hit in the second inning. He has a career-high 23-game hit streak going back to last season.