ARLINGTON TX - OCTOBER 16: Nelson Cruz #17 of the Texas Rangers is congratulated by David Murphy #7 after Cruz scored on an RBI triple by Ian Kinsler in the bottom of the fifth inning against the New York Yankees in Game Two of the ALCS during the 2010 MLB Playoffs at Rangers Ballpark in Arlington on October 16 2010 in Arlington Texas. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)

ALCS Game 2: Rangers Rip Hughes, Hold On For First Home Playoff Win In Franchise History

The Rangers ripped Phil Hughes for six extra-base hits and seven runs in four innings, and held on the rest of the way for a 7-2 win over the Yankees that evened up the series at one game apiece as it heads east to New York. Check out more at Lone Star Ball and Pinstripe Alley.

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Yankees Vs. Rangers, ALCS Game 2: Ian Kinsler Triple Drives Phil Hughes From Game

The Yankees were able to score on Lance Berkman's single, but that was only one run. Colby Lewis made quick work of his opponent in the fifth, and after going scoreless earlier, the Rangers got back on the board in the fifth. Nelson Cruz led off against Phil Hughes with a long double off the very top of the center field fence. Ian Kinsler then followed by lacing a line drive to right just past the outstretched glove of Nick Swisher. The ball rolled all the way to the wall, allowing Cruz to score and Kinsler to advance to third with an RBI triple.

That knock made it 6-1 Rangers, and Joe Girardi came out to replace Phil Hughes with Joba Chamberlain. Hughes' day:

4+ innings
10 hits
6 runs
3 walks
3 strikeouts
88 pitches (57 strikes)

It's the second four-inning start in a row for the Yankees, and all this bullpen strain can't be good.


Yankees Vs. Rangers, ALCS Game 2: Lance Berkman Gets Yankees On The Board

It isn't quite time to panic yet, but the Rangers' 5-0 lead is no longer a 5-0 lead. Robinson Cano led off the fourth inning with a long double off Colby Lewis, and advanced to third on a wild pitch. Lewis then struck out both Nick Swisher and Jorge Posada to lessen the threat, but Lance Berkman ripped a two-out grounder off the glove of Mitch Moreland at first to drive Cano home and make this a 5-1 ballgame.

Berkman took a wide turn around first and wound up caught in a pickle, ending the frame and limiting the damage. So that makes things better for Texas. Still, runs and runs, and some more insurance in the bottom half wouldn't be the worst thing in the world.

Lewis has thrown 66 pitches through four. Phil Hughes, meanwhile, is returning to the mound.


Yankees Vs. Rangers, ALCS Game 2: David Murphy, Bengie Molina Continue Pile-On

It's now 5-0 Rangers, because of course it is.

Colby Lewis pitched out of another jam in which he allowed two baserunners in the top of the third. Once that was accomplished, the Rangers went back to work against Phil Hughes. Doubles by Nelson Cruz, David Murphy, and Bengie Molina have turned this into a five-run game, and everything Hughes is throwing up there is getting killed, coming back faster than it left.

After three innings, Hughes' pitch count is up to 69, and he doesn't look the least bit sharp. Obviously, there's still a long, long way to go, but Texas couldn't have asked for a better start to Game 2 than the one they've gotten.


Yankees Vs. Rangers, ALCS Game 2: Michael Young Pads Ranger Lead

No, the Rangers weren't finished after David Murphy went deep. Mitch Moreland and Elvis Andrus hit consecutive two-out singles, and then Michael Young went the other way by hitting a sharp groundball down the first base line. The double scored Moreland from second to push the score to 3-0.

Andrus held up at third, and following an intentional walk of Josh Hamilton to load the bases, Phil Hughes got Vladimir Guerrero to ground out to end the inning. However, his pitch count is up to 55 just two frames in as Texas looks good.


Yankees Vs. Rangers, ALCS Game 2: David Murphy Solo Home Run Doubles Ranger Lead

Another day, another promising start for Texas. Though everyone will keep thinking about how Friday wound up, the best possible thing for the Rangers to do is establish a good early lead in Game 2, and they're on their way.

With one out and none on, David Murphy faced Phil Hughes, got ahead 2-0, and killed an inside fastball deep to right. This wasn't a line drive - this was a towering fly ball with more than enough distance, and the solo blast pushed the Rangers' lead to two.


Yankees Vs. Rangers, ALCS Game 2: Elvis Andrus Steals Home, Puts Rangers Up 1-0

After Friday night's heartbreak, it would've been understandable had the Rangers come out and struggled out of the gate. Instead, they've done quite the opposite. Colby Lewis needed just nine pitches to work through a perfect top of the first, including a strikeout of Derek Jeter. And then Elvis Andrus came out and put the Rangers on the board in the bottom half against Phil Hughes.

Andrus led off the first with a base hit that tipped off of Hughes' glove. Andrus then advanced to second on a wild pitch and stole third. The Rangers had men on the corners with one out and Vladimir Guerrero at the plate, but Guerrero struck out. Not deterred, however, they got on top with some aggressive baserunning. Josh Hamilton - standing on first - took off for second. When Jorge Posada threw down, Andrus broke for home, and slid in before the return throw could arrive.

It was a classic video game move, and it got the Rangers off to a promising start. It's 1-0 heading into the second, and Hughes' early pitch count is up to 28.

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