ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) — Chris Archer just blamed himself for the Tampa Bay Rays’ latest loss.
Archer (10-9) gave up eight runs and 11 hits in 5 1/3 innings of the Rays’ 2-4 loss to the Texas Rangers on Saturday night.
"I know the guys rely on me to give a better performance," the 26-year-old Archer said. "To boil it down to one thing: pitch execution with two strikes. … I wasn’t able to put guys away like I normally can."
Archer specifically pointed to two-strike pitches that Josh Hamilton and Chris Gimenez hit for singles in what grew into a seven-run sixth inning for Texas.
The Rays’ second straight loss in the three-game series dropped them behind the Rangers and third in line behind the teams in the American League’s two wild-card positions.
Archer (10-9) failed in his second attempt at a career-best 11th win.
"It’s motivating because there’s always room for improvement," Archer said.
Colby Lewis (13-5) gave up one run and five hits in six innings to lead the Rangers. Lewis walked two and threw 111 pitches — the last 15 to Asdrubal Cabrera, who fouled off 10 pitches before flying out to right fielder Shin-Soo Choo to end the top of the sixth with a runner on base and the Rays trailing 3-1.
"Lewis did exactly what we anticipated, work on the outer edge against most people and expand the zone," Rays manager Kevin Cash said. "He got them out with pitches down and away."
Lewis moved just one win away from tying his career-high of 14 set in Texas’ 2011 AL championship season. He also trails only Seattle’s Felix Hernandez and Houston’s Dallas Keuchel, who are tied for the AL lead with 14 wins.
Cabrera hit an eighth-inning homer, and went 1 for 3 with a walk.
"Cabrera has been on fire, swinging the bat well," Cash said. "Even on that whatever-pitch at-bat when he lined out, he was seeing the ball well."
The Rangers then scored seven in the bottom of the sixth for a 10-1 lead.
Gimenez, who hit a two-run homer in the second, singled to drive in the first run. Delino DeShields and Shin-Soo Choo each drove in a run, another scored on an error and then Adrian Beltre hit a three-run home run.
Choo added his 15th homer in the seventh.
Speed helped the Rays score their first run in the fifth against Lewis. Desmond Jennings led off with an infield single. Kevin Kiermaier forced out Jennings, but with two out, Kiermaier scored from second base on John Jaso’s hit to shortstop Elvis Andrus in shallow right-center field. Catcher Gimenez couldn’t handle Andrus’ throw as he turned to try to tag the sliding Kiermaier.
The Rays tagged Texas’ bullpen for two runs in the seventh on Evan Longoria’s bases-loaded single. Cabrera hit a solo homer in the eighth.
SEEING PITCHES, SEEING DOUBLE
Rays right fielder Grady Sizemore had a 10-pitch at-bat in the first inning, and saw eight pitches in the third inning, with nothing to show for either. He struck out the first time and the next time up lined into a double play — his third in four at-bats.
Rays: LHP Drew Smyly (torn labrum) will come off the disabled list for the first time since May to start on Sunday.
Rangers: Texas confirmed that LHP Cole Hamels, who missed a start Thursday because of a sore left groin, will be able to start on Monday. LHP Derek Holland may not be far behind after throwing 89 pitches in a rehab start with Triple-A Round Rock on Friday. "We have a decision to make sometime soon," manager Jeff Banister said.
Rays: Smyly (0-1, 2.70) is 3-2, 1.96 in 10 career starts for Tampa Bay. Opponents have batted .159 against him. Smyly missed a chunk of the season with a shoulder injury. With the Rays in the playoff race, he said, "I’m glad I can be a part of it again."
Rangers: RHP Yovani Gallardo (8-9, 3.33) lost his only start against Tampa Bay this season. He’s coming off 5 2/3 scoreless innings in Texas’ 3-2 loss at Minnesota on Tuesday.