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Kenta Maeda throws only two pitches before leaving with right side abdominal pain; Rangers beat Detroit 9-1 to avoid a sweep


AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez
Detroit Tigers’ Kenta Maeda and catcher Jake Rogers, right, stand by the mound waiting for manager AJ Hinch, left, during the first inning of the team’s baseball game against the Texas Rangers, Wednesday, June 5, 2024, in Arlington, Texas. Maeda left the game.

ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) — 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 on 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, throwing 97 pitches. He received a huge ovation as he left the match.

David Robertson and Kirby Yates completed Texas’ combined two-hitter.

Malloy was called up from Triple-A Toledo on Monday. He was the starting DH in all three games of the Tigers’ series in Texas, going 0 for 8 with three strikeouts for his homer. He added a single in the eighth inning.

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.

Jonah Heim and Josh Smith each had three hits with a homer and two RBI for the Rangers (30-32), who salvaged the final of the three-game series.

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) finished a two-stop road trip 4-3.

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.

Ureña has made 149 Major League starts. His only complete game came in 2018 for Miami.

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