Houston, TX – Yu Darvish was perfect through 8 2/3 innings and the Texas Rangers defeated the Houston Astros, 7-0, in an American League West matchup on Tuesday.
Darvish (1-0) seemed unstoppable and was one out away from perfection when Marwin Gonzalez hit a ground ball between his legs and into center field for a single. Darvish was then replaced by Michael Kirkman, and despite not getting to finish out the game, recorded an impressive 14 strikeouts.
Ian Kinsler hit a two-run home run for the Rangers, who recorded 12 hits. Lance Berkman had two RBI while Nelson Cruz, Elvis Andrus and Mitch Moreland knocked in a run apiece in the victory, Texas' first of the season.
Gonzalez and Jose Altuve were the only two to record hits for the Astros, who saw starter Lucas Harrell (0-1) allow one run on six hits over six innings.
With one out in the top of the third, Craig Gentry hit a ground-rule double. Kinsler followed with an infield single and Andrus was walked, loading the bases. Berkman then singled to left field to put up the first score.
Texas would not score again until the seventh. After a one-out triple by Gentry, Kinsler hit a home run deep into left.
Wesley Wright filled in for the Astros in the eighth, but immediately walked David Murphy, and then allowed Cruz a double to left center, scoring Murphy. A.J. Pierzynski grounded out, but got Cruz to third, allowing Mitch Moreland to hit a sacrifice fly to give them a 5-0 lead.
In the ninth, Veras pitched for Houston, but he also struggled. Kinsler drew a leadoff walk and Andrus followed with an RBI triple to deep right, making it 6-0. Berkman then hit a single, allowing Andrus to score.
Darvish grounded out Jason Castro and Carlos Corporan in the bottom of the inning before Gonzalez ended his night. Kirkman then replaced him, and allowed a single to Altuve and Gonzalez. However, he struck out J.D. Martinez, who was pinch-hitting for Brett Wallace, to end the game.
Andrus had two triples ... Darvish became the first pitcher to lose a perfect game with two outs in the ninth inning since Armando Galarraga on June 2, 2010 ... Had Darvish pitched a perfect game, it would have been the seventh no-hitter in Rangers history and the first since Kenny Rogers threw a perfect game on July 28, 1994.