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Ureña’s perfect-game bid ends with a home run, but the Rangers beat Detroit 9–1 to avoid a sweep

ARLINGTON, Texas – Texas starter José Ureña had a perfect game through six innings as recent Detroit call-up Justyn-Henry Malloy homered for his first Major League hit, but the Rangers defeated the Tigers 9-1 Wednesday night .

Ureña (2-5) retired the first 15 batters before Malloy led off by hitting a 90 mph sinker 400 feet to left center field on a 3-1 pitch. The 32-year-old allowed one hit and one walk in 6 2/3 innings, tying his longest outing of the season, throwing 97 pitches and striking out six.

“He was really at the top of his game,” Rangers manager Bruce Bochy said. “Great effort from him, the offense.”

He received a huge ovation as he left the match and responded by removing his cap.

“That was an amazing feeling,” Ureña said. “We put on a pretty good show for the fans.”

David Robertson and Kirby Yates completed the combined two-hitter as Texas (30-32) broke out after scoring one run in each of the first two games of the series.

Malloy was called up from Triple-A Toledo on Monday. He was the starting DH in all three games of the series, Detroit won the first two games and went 0 for 8 with three strikeouts before his home run. He added a single in the eighth inning.

“People talk about it like you’re taking the monkey off your back. It feels like getting an angry gorilla off your back,” said Malloy, 24. “I wanted to get out of there. Shortly afterwards it feels like a blackout.”

Two players left with injuries during the first two innings. Detroit starter Kenta Maeda threw just two pitches before leaving with right side abdominal pain. Texas shortstop Corey Seager left with left hamstring tightness after an RBI single into the opposite field in the second.

Bochy said Seager was removed as a precaution. The hit extended Seager’s career-best on-base streak to 28 games.

Jonah Heim and Josh Smith both had three hits with a homer and two RBIs.

Five Tigers relievers followed Maeda, starting with Joey Wentz (0-1), whose 2 2/3 innings and 65 pitches were season highs while allowing three runs. Fifth was position player Zach McKinstry.

Detroit (31-31) has eight wins in its last 12 games.

Ureña was signed as a minor league free agent in January. He started the season in the bullpen, but was moved to the starting rotation in early May when several Texas starters went on the injured list. He is 2-3 as a starter and has allowed a total of four runs in his previous four starts.

He was helped by two excellent fielding actions. Left fielder Travis Jankowski ran in a cutting catch hit by Riley Greene in the fourth inning. In the fifth, Colt Keith’s hard-hit liner to the left side was grabbed by Ezequiel Duran, who entered the game in the third inning when Smith was moved from third to shortstop to replace Seager.

Maeda’s start was the shortest in the majors since Miami’s Pablo Lopez was ejected after hitting Ronald Acuña Jr. of Atlanta had hit with the opening throw of the game on July 2, 2021.

Tigers: RHP Alex Faedo (right hip inflammation) was placed on the 15-day injured list.

Rangers: RHP Tyler Mahle (elbow surgery) threw 20 pitches to live hitters for the first time in a year. Next Wednesday he will throw 30.

Rangers RHP Michael Lorenzen (3-2, 2.96 ERA) will face Giants RHP Logan Webb (4-5, 2.95) Friday in Texas manager Bruce Bochy’s first game in Arlington against the franchise he led to three World Series titles . Tigers RHP Reese Olson (1-6, 2.48) will start the series opener against Milwaukee at home on Friday.

AP MLB: https://apnews.com/hub/mlb

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