ARLINGTON (AP) — Adrian Beltre had three hits with three RBIs after new Hall of Fame catcher Ivan Rodriguez acknowledged his 3,000-hit milestone, and the Texas Rangers beat Houston 8-3 on Saturday night, handing the AL-leading Astros a season-high fifth straight loss.
An RBI double and two-run single from Beltre came after Rodriguez paid tribute to the 38-year-old third baseman during a pre-game ceremony to retire Rodriguez’s No. 7. Beltre’s 3,000th hit came on the same day Rodriguez was inducted into the Hall of Fame two weeks ago.
Brett Nicholas hit a three-run homer, his first of the season, for a 3-0 lead in the second inning after a 21-minute rain delay in the first. Mike Napoli had a solo shot off Mike Fiers (7-7), who has allowed six home runs in his past two starts against the Rangers.
West Division-leading Houston dropped to 2-9 since Aug. 1 and saw its lead for the best record in the AL drop to five games over Boston.
Fiers, who has lost three straight decisions, allowed three walks and hit a batter among the first six hitters he faced, and two scored on Nicholas’ high drive off the facade of the upper deck in right field.
Texas starter Tyson Ross (3-2) hit two batters, as did Houston reliever Francisco Liriano — Joey Gallo and Carlos Gomez back-to-back in the fifth before center fielder George Springer threw out Beltre trying to score on a fly ball by Rougned Odor.
Ross allowed five walks, four hits and three runs in 5 2/3 innings in the right-hander’s first start since July 23 after going on the disabled list with a blister on his right index finger. The Rangers sent utility man Ryan Rua to Triple-A Round Rock to make room for Ross.
Beltre, now at 3,013 hits, moved past Wade Boggs for 28th on the career list. The double was his 607th, breaking a tie with Paul Waner for 13th. It was Beltre’s 1,100th extra-base hit, pushing him past Eddie Murray for 19th place.
J.D. Davis had his first career RBI for Houston on a double in the fourth, but Derek Fisher was thrown out at home trying to score on the hit as well. Alex Bregman extended his career-best hitting streak to 14 games with an RBI single in the fourth.
The Texas rivals both wore replica uniforms from 1999, the season Rodriguez was the AL MVP after hitting .332 with career highs of 35 homers and 113 RBIs.
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