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BAL@TEX: Napoli launches a three-run shot to right

ARLINGTON -- The Rangers put away the Orioles early in completing a three-game sweep, winning Wednesday, 13-5, at Rangers Ballpark.

Texas loaded the bases before it recorded an out in the first inning, eventually scoring four runs on the way to snapping a seven-game losing streak in series finales.

"We swung it well; we pitched well; we played good 'D,'" Michael Young said. "We had two wins where we scored some runs and one where we came from behind late and found a way to get it done. Hopefully we can get some momentum and get it rolling."

Those four runs seemed like many more, because of the way Alexi Ogando was pitching. He looked sharp, giving up three runs on four hits and one walk in seven innings.

"He was good," Washington said. "He gave up the two runs with the home run by [Derrek] Lee and then put up some zeros in between, then hung a slider to Vlad [Guerrero]. Other than that, he got us through the seventh inning, so I was very pleased with that."

Not only did Ogando put up zeros, but he did it economically. Of the seven innings Ogando pitched, five of them took 15 pitches or less.

"I was trying to get ahead in the count to hitters, and I had good results in that," Ogando said through an interpreter. "Since I did, the pitch count has to be lower because I got ahead in the count."

Texas put the game out of reach by scoring eight runs in the fifth, sixth and seventh innings. Mike Napoli hit a three-run home run in the seventh to effectively end the competitive portion of the game.

Even though the Orioles scored two runs off Yoshinori Tateyama in the eighth, there was still far too much ground to make up.

The Orioles have been haunted by bad starting pitching of late, and the Rangers ensured that it would be more of the same for Jeremy Guthrie.

"I would have loved to have pitched better," Guthrie said. "I did not have a good outing. Start to finish, really struggled and had to work harder than I should have had to work. So I am disappointed."

No one contributed more to Guthrie's woes than Young. He drove in a runner with an double in the first inning, and singled in another in the fifth.

Young notched his third three-hit game of the series.

"He certainly swung the bat. He did whatever we needed him to do when we needed him to do it," Washington said. "I don't think it's anything anyone in Texas hasn't seen Michael do before."

Young also scored two runs, bringing his career total to 958 and tying him with Rafael Palmeiro for the Rangers record.

"It means a lot," Young said. "I've been here a long time, this is my 11th year with this team, and every time one of these things pops up, it reminds me of the time I spent here. I have tons of good memories and I know that the best is yet to come."

Elvis Andrus had a breakout game, going 4-for-4 with two doubles an a walk.

"He was due. He swung the bat extremely well tonight," Washington said. "When he stays in the middle of the field, he's good. He stayed in the middle of the field tonight and let his hands work, and he ended up catching the left-center-field gap twice, which was good."

Andrus had been struggling, entering the game 1-for-19 on the homestand. It appeared as if his left wrist, which he injured June 24 in New York, bothered him more than he let on, until Wednesday, when he hit the ball hard each at-bat.

Andrus had a scare in the fifth when he jammed that same wrist against second base sliding in headfirst.

"It just hit the base," Andrus said. "It didn't bother me at all, it just scared me for a little bit when I got up."

With an error-free series in which the team scored 30 runs, the Rangers know they cannot play this well for the remainder of the season, but they also know they need to ride the streak for as long as they can.

"I would take it if we could play it for the whole second half after the break, but baseball just don't work like that," Washington said. "There's going to be periods where you're going to go through a lull, and some bad things are going to happen." Comments