ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) -- Nate Robertson finally got a victory to show for his good pitching, even after being matched zero-for-zero by his counterpart.
Robertson, who led Detroit with 12 wins last season, got his first victory in 12 starts since August, throwing eight strong innings in the Tigers' 2-0 win over the Texas Rangers on Monday night."It's just a big one so I can get on the board with a win," said Robertson, who had allowed just two earned runs in his previous two starts without getting a win."He's pitched well enough to win at least one other, maybe a couple of other games," manager Alan Trammell said. "You can talk about doing things, but the best way is to get a positive result. For a pitcher, that means a win."Chris Young pitched eight shutout innings for Texas before Francisco Cordero (0-1), the AL saves leader, took over and got the first two outs of the ninth.Robertson (1-2), who had lost five straight decisions since beating Kansas City on Aug. 30, allowed six hits and walked one. He got plenty of help from several former Rangers.After Dmitri Young drew a two-out walk, Craig Monroe tripled. He then scored on a single by Carlos Pena, who made his major-league debut for Texas in 2001 before being traded twice -- going to Detroit from Oakland midway through the 2002 season."Pena and I, we like to say they gave up on us," said Monroe, who made his major-league debut for the Rangers in 2001. "Detroit saw fit to give us an opportunity. To come back and beat your former team feels good."Especially with more than 100 family and friends from his hometown of Texarkana, Texas, in the stands.After Hank Blalock led off the Rangers' ninth with a single off Jamie Walker, Ugueth Urbina -- who pitched in Texas the first half of 2003 -- came on for his second save in three chances to complete the Tigers' first shutout of the season and third straight win.Troy Percival, the regular Detroit closer, wasn't available. He went on the disabled list earlier Monday with a partial tendon tear in his forearm.Rod Barajas had a leadoff double in the Texas eighth, but pinch-runner Laynce Nix was thrown out at third on a bunt by Gary Matthews Jr. The ball dribbled just in front of the plate, and catcher Ivan Rodriguez quickly scooped it and threw out Nix. Rodriguez caught Mark Teixeira's foul popup to end the inning.Rodriguez is a longtime fan favorite in Texas, where he was a starter at age 19 and became a perennial All-Star and Gold Glove winner."It was a very close play that turned out to be a big play," Rodriguez said. "I'm excited. I love to win, not because I'm playing the Rangers. I love to see this team win."Rodriguez played the first 12 seasons of his career in Texas before becoming a free agent after 2002. He was 0-for-4 with two strikeouts.The Rangers, held scoreless for the second time this season, had six singles and a double and never got a runner to third base. Texas had won five of its previous six games.It was the longest scoreless outing for Young, who pitched through a blister that developed on his finger in his 19th career start. He threw 5 2/3 scoreless innings his last start, a win at Oakland, and his only loss the past five starts was against Seattle, when he allowed two runs over eight innings."He was the reason we were in the game," Texas manager Buck Showalter said.Young threw 67 of his 96 pitches for strikes with five strikeouts and one walk. Robertson also threw 67 strikes -- of 104 pitches -- with three strikeouts and a walk."I thought I threw some pitches well, mixed pitches well," Young said. "I'm pleased with the way I pitched, but not the result."Nook Logan was 3-for-4 for the Tigers, including a leadoff triple.Logan and Brandon Inge had consecutive singles to start the Tigers' sixth, but neither reached second base. Both were caught stealing by Barajas, who has thrown out nine of 18 potential base stealers.
Tigers shortstop Carlos Guillen, the AL's top hitter at .387, got the night off. He has a seven-game hitting streak. ... Teixeira was 0-for-3, ending his career-best 12-game hitting streak. ... Logan, who had his third three-hit game of the season, had gone 5-for-26 with six strikeouts his previous eight games. ... Texas' David Dellucci struck out as a pinch-hitter to end the game, ending his streak of 19 straight games reaching base.