ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) — Shin-Soo Choo is a game away from matching the majors’ longest on-base streak this season only because the Texas Rangers couldn’t protect a late lead in a loss to the San Diego Padres.
Choo singled with two outs in the ninth inning to reach base in his 39th straight game after Wil Myers and Hunter Renfroe hit run-scoring doubles as part of a three-run eighth that helped the Padres rally for a 3-2 win Tuesday night.
The Rangers led 2-0 when Choo struck out looking in the seventh to drop to 0 for 4. Instead of the streak ending in a win, though, Choo kept the Texas ninth alive with a liner over leaping shortstop Freddy Galvis before Brad Hand got Nomar Mazara to fly out with two runners on for his 22nd save.
“After fourth at-bat, strikeout, I wish we just finish the game,” said Choo, who is trying to match a 40-game streak by Philadelphia’s Odubel Herrera from March 30 to May 19. “That’s a nice, clean game, 2-0. I’m not really expecting the fifth at-bat.”
Four of six San Diego hitters reached against Jake Diekman (1-1). After Myers ended the Texas shutout, Christian Villanueva lifted a tying sacrifice fly to left before Renfroe’s go-ahead liner down the line in left.
“We needed it a lot,” said Eric Hosmer, whose one-out single helped get the rally going after a leadoff walk to Travis Jankowski. “Offensively, we haven’t been firing on all cylinders, so it was big to come from behind, kind of steal this one.”
Rougned Odor hit a solo homer for Texas in the second and Robinson Chirinos added one in the fourth against former teammate Tyson Ross.
San Diego relievers struck out five straight batters, starting with the second of two from Matt Strahm (2-2) in the seventh. Kirby Yates fanned the side in the eighth and Hand finished the Padres’ second win in 10 games. The Rangers lost just their second in the past 10.
Austin Bibens-Dirkx gave up two hits, struck out six and walked four in five innings in his fourth start for Texas. The right-hander is in a similar fill-in role from last season, when he made his major league debut as a 32-year-old following 12 years in the minors and won five games.
“Everyone before me did their job,” Diekman said. “My job is to get it done and I didn’t do that. That stings really hard.”
Mazara had three hits a night after leaving early for precautionary reasons because of tightness in his left hamstring.
ROSS SOLID AGAIN
Ross had another solid start in a bounce-back season after posting a 7.71 ERA for Texas last year before his late-season release in his return from surgery for thoracic outlet syndrome. The right-hander gave up five hits in six innings. Ross leads San Diego starters with a 3.32 ERA.
KUDOS TO COLON
Texas right-hander Bartolo Colon was honored before the game for passing Juan Marichal for the most wins by a Dominican-born pitcher. The 45-year-old earned his 244th career win at Kansas City on the most recent road trip. Manager Jeff Banister presented him with a jersey with “244” on the back, and a quote from Marichal was shown on the videoboard calling the milestone “a special achievement for your career and your country.” Colon needs two wins to pass Dennis Martinez of Nicaragua for the most wins by a pitcher from Latin America.
Rangers: 1B Ronald Guzman was placed on the seven-day concussion disabled list a day after the rookie’s head struck the knee of Padres third baseman Christian Villanueva when Guzman was diving back on an attempted pickoff. ... LHP Martin Perez struck out nine in five scoreless innings for Class A Hickory in his first rehab start Monday. Perez has been on the DL since May 10 with right elbow discomfort. Perez had arthroscopic surgery on that elbow in December. He broke a bone in a fall after being spooked by a bull on his ranch in Venezuela.
LHP Clayton Richard (7-6, 4.23 ERA) is scheduled to pitch for the Padres in the finale of the three-game series. Richard is 6-2 during a streak of nine straight starts with at least six innings, the longest active streak for a lefty in the majors. Texas LHP Mike Minor (5-4, 5.06 ERA) hasn’t allowed a homer in his past two starts after giving up at least one in each of the previous seven.