SURPRISE, Ariz. (AP) – Prince Fielder homered and drove in three runs, Elvis Andrus stroked two hits in his first game and a Texas Rangers split-squad defeated the Cleveland Indians 8-7 Sunday.
Fielder hit a two-run homer in the fifth, his first since May 8. Fielder had season-ending neck surgery May 27.
“I’m 100 percent,” he said. “I don’t know what that’s going to mean during the season, but as far as my neck and everything I feel 100 percent. I’m happy about that that I have my strength back. I’ll take the feel good. I definitely want to feel good and keep that swing pat going.”
“It’s been nine months, so I’m trying to get in the groove again. Today definitely helped with the confidence and I definitely like the way my swing is.”
Andrus, who missed the first four games with left knee soreness, singled home Rougned Odor, who had doubled, in the fifth.
“It was a great beginning,” Andrus said. “My knee feels good. One of the things I was concerned with was my knee. I haven’t felt anything in a while. I was running fine. I feel good in my approach.”
His RBI single went the opposite way, punching it into right field.
“That’s when I’m at my best,” Andrus said.
Indians non-roster invitee James Ramsey hit a two-run homer in the ninth to tie it at 7. Giovanny Urshela also hit a two-run homer for Cleveland.
Minor leaguer Isaiah Kiner-Falefa singled home the winning run with two outs in the ninth.
Jared Hoying, who led the Pacific Coast League last season with 66 extra-base hits, homered for Texas.
Indians: Left-hander T.J. House yielded three runs, one unearned, on three hits, including Hoying’s homer, in three innings. “That was a changeup,” House said. “I probably shouldn’t have sped his bat up there. I was feeding him a lot of fastballs and he was late on it. I wanted to work on my changeup and he worked on it, too.”
Rangers: Anthony Bass, who made 18 starts in 2011-12 with the Padres but has been a reliever the past two seasons, worked two scoreless innings. With Yu Darvish possibly out for the season with an elbow injury, Bass hopes his name is in the hat for a rotation slot. “Hopefully, I threw it in before he got hurt,” he said. “Hopefully, I was in the mix. I just go out there and get outs, whatever way possible, whether I’m starting or relieving.”
Indians: RHP Josh Tomlin was a late scratch with shoulder fatigue.
Rangers: LHP Derek Holland, who is out with shoulder stiffness, threw long toss Sunday and could throw a midweek bullpen.
KLUBER STILL UNSIGNED
The Indians signed 11 pre-arbitration players Sunday, but Cy Young winner Corey Kluber was not on the list. Reportedly talks have stalled to sign Kluber to a multiyear contract. The deadline is Wednesday for signing ineligible arbitration players. Clubs can renew contracts at their will if a deal is not finalized. Signing Sunday to one-year contacts: RHP Cody Allen, RHP Cody Anderson, RHP Shawn Armstrong, LHP Kyle Crockett, LHP Nick Hagadone, LHP Ryan Merritt, OF Carlos Moncrief, IF Jose Ramirez, IF Urshela, IF Zach Walters and C-IF Tony Wolters.
Indians: Brandon Moss, who had right hip surgery in the offseason, is scheduled to make his Cactus League debut Monday as the DH against Seattle.
Rangers: RHP Colby Lewis, who yielded six runs before he retired a batter and gave up three consecutive home runs against the Royals on Wednesday, will start Monday against Oakland.
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3/8/2015 20:31:25 (GMT -4:00)