By HOWARD ULMAN AP Sports Writer
BOSTON (AP) _ Elvis Andrus hit a tiebreaking, two-run double in the seventh inning after earlier ending a 1-for-18 slump and the Texas Rangers beat the Boston Red Sox 3-2 on Wednesday night.
Jarrod Saltalamacchia doubled in a run for Boston in the eighth, but Joe Nathan pitched the ninth for his 18th save in 19 chances.
Neal Cotts (1-0) got the win despite walking three of the four batters he faced. Craig Breslow (2-1) took the loss.
The victory gave the Rangers their best record through the first 58 games at 36-22 _ their previous best was 35-23 three times in the 1990s. They also broke a four-game road losing streak.
Texas has the best record in the AL, while Boston is second at 36-24 after their three-game winning streak stopped.
Five Texas pitchers allowed Boston just five hits one day after the Red Sox got 19 in a 17-5 win over the Rangers in the opener of the three-game series.
Both starters pitched very well with each giving up just one run on a homer.
Adrian Beltre connected off John Lackey in the fourth for his 12th home run of the season. Dustin Pedroia tied it with his fourth homer in the sixth off Alexi Ogando, who returned after being on the disabled list since May 16 with a strained right biceps.
Andrus singled in the fifth then got the big hit on the first pitch from reliever Koji Uehara.
Breslow had relieved Lackey to start the inning and allowed a leadoff double to Mitch Moreland, who left the game with tightness in his right hamstring and was replaced by pinch-runner Jeff Baker. After Jurickson Profar grounded out, pinch-hitter Craig Gentry walked and Uehara replaced Breslow to face Andrus, who broke the 1-1 tie.
Ogando struck out six, walked three and gave up three hits in his first appearance since May 15. Lackey struck out five and allowed five hits and no walks in six innings.
Boston threatened with no outs in the seventh when Stephen Drew led off with a walk and went to second on a single by Jose Iglesias. After Jackie Bradley Jr. struck out, both runners advanced on a wild pitch. But Daniel Nava grounded out and Jonny Gomes flied out.
Saltalamacchia’s double drove in Mike Napoli, who walked with two outs.
NOTES: Lackey didn’t get a decision for the first time in his nine starts. He allowed three runs or less for the eighth time this season. … Iglesias reached base for the 17th time in his 18 games. … To make room for Ogando, the Rangers sent LHP Joseph Ortiz to Triple-A Round Rock. Ortiz allowed six runs in 2 1-3 innings in Boston’s 17-5 win on Tuesday night. … Derek Holland (5-2) pitches for Texas against Jon Lester (6-2) on Thursday night.
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