03/07/08 6:52 PM ET
Hamilton slams Brewers early on
Outfielder caps off six-run inning; Jennings, McCarthy effective
By Adam McCalvy / MLB.com
at Maryvale Baseball Park
Friday, March 7 Rangers at the plate: Josh Hamilton hit a long grand slam in the third inning, when the Rangers batted around against two Brewers pitchers and scored six runs. The first six batters in the inning reached base including Ian Kinsler and Frank Catalanotto, who hit RBI singles. Then came the big blow by Hamilton, who doubled his Cactus League RBI total. Catalanotto finished with a pair of RBIs. Brewers at the plate: Left-fielder Ryan Braun hit a three-run home run in the fifth inning, his team-best third of the spring, and the Brewers rallied from a 6-0 deficit. Catcher Jason Kendall continued his strong spring (.412 average in eight games) with two hits and an RBI, and mid-game sub Vinny Rottino hit a go-ahead, two-run single in a three-run eighth inning. Corey Hart went 0-for-3 with a pair of strikeouts and is hitting .190 in Cactus League games. Rangers on the mound: Starter Jason Jennings surrendered a third-inning double to J.J. Hardy but nothing else over 2 2/3 scoreless innings of work. He struck out one and walked a pair of batters. The Rangers had a shutout working until Robinson Tejeda surrendered Braun's homer. Josh Rupe took the loss after surrendering three runs on a hit and three walks in 2/3 of an inning. Brewers on the mound: Chris Capuano held Texas scoreless on one hit in the first two innings but couldn't record an out in the third. He surrendered four straight singles, then walked Michael Young before reaching his pitch count on Hamilton's homer. Luis Pena relieved Capuano and retired all three hitters he faced to escape further damage. Carlos Villanueva, one of the pitchers battling with Capuano for openings in the starting rotation, allowed one run in three solid innings. Brian Shouse allowed three hits and a run in an inning of work but earned the win in relief, and Seth McClung worked around a hit and a walk in the ninth for the save. Cactus League records: Rangers 5-4, Brewers 5-4.
Up next: The Rangers will get a look at veteran right-hander Greg Maddux on Friday when they host the Padres at Surprise Stadium. Lefty A.J. Murray is scheduled to start for Texas.
Adam McCalvy is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.