Series: Game 1 of 3

Texas leads 1-0 (as of 3/30)

Game 1: Sunday, March 30
Game 2: Tuesday, April 1
Game 3: Wednesday, April 2

Rangers 6

(16-13, 10-7 away)

Angels 3

(9-21, 8-10 home)

    8:05 PM ET, March 30, 2003

    Angel Stadium of Anaheim, Anaheim, California 

    123456789 R H E
    TEX 100310100 6 12 0
    ANA 101010000 3 8 2

    W: I. Valdez (1-0)

    L: J. Lackey (0-1)

    S: U. Urbina (1)

    Showalter wins debut as Rangers manager

    ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) -- The ThunderStix and rally monkeys were out in force and Game 7 winner John Lackey was on the mound.

    Alex Rodriguez

    Juan Gonzalez congratulates Alex Rodriguez following A-Rod's 299th career homer on Sunday night.

    The World Series champion Anaheim Angels and their crowd were all set for a fun night. Too bad for them, the Texas Rangers had other ideas.

    "It was a great feeling to see the fans and get that feeling again. I just wish we could have rewarded them with a little better game on the field,'' Anaheim manager Mike Scioscia said after Texas won 6-3 Sunday in the major league opener.

    The Angels began this season the same way they've started all four under Scioscia -- with a thud.

    "One more ceremony and I think we'll be ready to go,'' Anaheim's David Eckstein said. "We get our rings on Tuesday, and we'd better be ready to play.''

    Alex Rodriguez, Juan Gonzalez and Michael Young homered, making manager Buck Showalter a winner in his debut with the Rangers.

    "It was a special night in a lot of ways,'' said Showalter, who was particularly moved by the pregame ceremonies honoring American military personnel.

    "It was a pretty emotional night for me and the team. It took me about an inning or two to get the emotions out,'' he said.

    The Rangers finished last in the AL West with a 72-90 record last year, but Rodriguez said the team was inspired by what the Angels accomplished.

    "It kind of gives everyone a chip for optimism,'' said Rodriguez, who admitted he's been frustrated by the Rangers' poor records his two years with the club. "We have a great bunch of guys. I think we're a lot more united here than we have been in the last few years.

    "I think our appetite is great for winning.''

    Lackey was hit hard as the Angels stumbled out of the gate again. Last year, they started with a 6-0 loss to Cleveland and fell to a franchise-worst 6-14 before coming back to win a club-record 99 games.

    After rousing pregame ceremonies that included the raising of the Angels' first World Series championship flag in their 42-year history, Young quieted the crowd with a three-run shot over the center-field wall off Lackey to give Texas a 4-2 lead in the fourth inning.

    "That was definitely the blueprint coming into the year, that we could score early and lock it down with our bullpen and some defense,'' Young said.

    The Rangers rocked Lackey for five runs on eight hits in five innings. In his last outing, the 24-year-old right-hander became the first rookie to win the seventh game of a World Series in 93 years when he gave up one run in five innings of the Angels' 4-1 victory over San Francisco on Oct. 27.

    Ismael Valdes made his first start in an opener and got the win against his former teammates, allowing three runs on seven hits in five innings.

    Ugueth Urbina, signed as a free agent over the winter, pitched the ninth for the save. He had 40 for Boston last year.

    Texas relievers combined for one-hit ball over four innings.

    The Angels' runs came on an RBI single by Brad Fullmer in the first inning, another run-scoring single by Garret Anderson in the third, and Darin Erstad's RBI groundout in the fifth.

    Rodriguez, hampered by a herniated disk in his neck this spring, made it 5-2 with a solo homer in the fifth. He began trotting almost as soon as the ball left his bat, and the ball landed deep in the left-field seats.

    The homer was the 299th for the 27-year-old A-Rod, beginning his eighth full big league season. He went 1-for-5 and is 5-for-34 in season openers.

    Gonzalez, coming back from an injury-plagued year, had a home run, double and single.

    Besides the sea of red-clad fans in the sellout crowd of 43,525, there also was a strong red, white and blue theme. A huge "USA'' was mowed into the outfield grass, there was a moment of silence for U.S. servicemen and a flyover by Navy fighter jets. The national anthem was played by the 1st Marine Expeditionary Force Band.

    Tim Salmon, the Angels' senior member, helped raise the World Series flag near the left-field seats. Jackie Autry, widow of former team owner Gene Autry, also participated in the flag-raising ceremony.

    Game notes

    Only nine players on Texas' opening day roster were on the 25-man roster last year. The Angels kept their same lineup and starting rotation. ... Showalter is 6-2 in openers, going 4-0 in 1992-95 with the New York Yankees, and 1-2 with Arizona in 1998-2000. ... LHP Jarrod Washburn, who went 18-6 last year and would have been the opening day starter against the Rangers, instead pitched in a minor league game in Arizona on Sunday as he worked his way back from a shoulder injury. He's scheduled to start Saturday when the Angels are at Oakland.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press