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Rangers clobber Diamondbacks to move to brink of club’s first World Series title

Marcus Semien’s two-run triple and three-run homer powered Texas to a 10-run lead by the third inning, Corey Seager hit another long home run and the Rangers beat the Arizona Diamondbacks 11-7 on Tuesday night to move ahead three games to one in the World Series.

World Series Game 4: Texas Rangers 11-7 Arizona Diamondbacks – liveRead more

Rangers batters whipped through Diamondbacks pitching like a desert storm, taking a 10-0 lead and becoming the first team in Series history with consecutive five-run innings. Seager’s third two-run homer of the Series capped the second, Semien’s drive punctuated the third and Jonah Heim added an eighth-inning shot.

Texas improved to a record 10-0 on the road this postseason and moved within one win of the first title in the 63-season history of a franchise that started as the expansion Washington Senators in 1961.

Nathan Eovaldi tries to close out the third all-wildcard Series on Wednesday night against Zac Gallen in a rematch of Game 1 starters.

Forty-two of 49 previous teams to take 3-1 leads have gone on to win the World Series. The most recent club to overcome a 3-1 deficit was the Chicago Cubs against Cleveland in 2016.

Texas scored their first 10 runs with two outs, battering an Arizona staff that needed four pitchers to get their first eight outs. Miguel Castro’s wild pitch brought home the first run, and an error by Gold Glove first baseman Christian Walker – the first by either team in the Series – led to five unearned runs in the third.

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Seager and Semien, All-Star middle infielders signed as free agents for $500m combined before the 2022 season, have six RBIs each in the Series. Seager, the first shortstop with three Series homers, has four homers in his last five games dating to the AL Championship Series. After leading the Los Angeles Dodgers to the 2020 title, he could join Sandy Koufax, Bob Gibson and Reggie Jackson as the only two-time World Series MVPs.

Travis Jankowski, replacing injured slugger Adolis García in right field, singled in the second and hit a two-run double in the third in his first Series at-bats.

García, the AL Championship Series MVP, spoke at the Rangers’ pregame meeting.

“We’re trying to go out there and win this for him,” Seager said. “It really fired the guys up.”

Andrew Heaney, a 32-year-old lefty with his fifth big league team, got the win by allowing four hits in five innings. Six relievers followed, with closer José Leclerc getting the final out.

Lourdes Gurriel Jr hit a sacrifice fly in the fourth for Arizona and a three-run homer in the eighth against Chris Stratton. Tommy Pham had a sacrifice fly in the eighth, and Gabriel Moreno delivered a two-run single in the ninth.

There was a festive mood at Chase Field, where the roof was open for the second straight night. Some fans arrived in Halloween costumes, but many started booing in the second inning.

With both teams short on starting pitching, they each planned to string together bullpen games in what Arizona manager Torey Lovullo termed a “chess match” he looked forward to. For the Diamondbacks, it was a gambit that failed.

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Josh Jung doubled off opener Joe Mantiply leading off the second and in came Castro, who gave up García’s game-winning homer in the 11th inning of the opener. Jung advanced on a groundout and put Texas ahead when Castro bounced a changeup off the plate for a wild pitch.

Semien hooked a slider that landed about 18 inches fair and bounced into the left-field corner for a two-run triple and a 3-0 lead. Castro, head bowed, was booed as he walked off, and Seager hit Kyle Nelson’s slider 431 feet off a video board above the right-center wall for his sixth postseason homer.

After a World Series opened with three errorless games for the first time, Arizona’s defense cracked at an inopportune time. After singles by Jung and Nathaniel Lowe with one out in the third, Luis Frías relieved and Heim hit a sharp grounder to Walker, who had a chance for a double play but dropped the ball on the transfer to his hand as he looked to throw to second.

Jankowski doubled and Semien sent a fastball at the letters over the left-field wall. Heim had been 0 for 12 before his homer against Ryne Nelson.