Early explosion moves Rangers to verge of World Series title

Early explosion moves Rangers to verge of World Series title

PHOENIX — The Texas Rangers exploded for back-to-back five-run innings, turning a Halloween Game 4 of the World Series into a nightmare for the Arizona Diamondbacks and their fans Tuesday night.

The Rangers rolled to an 11-7 win to take a 3-1 lead in the best-of-seven series. They are one victory away from their first World Series championship.

Marcus Semien, who entered the game batting .197 in the postseason, hit a two-run triple in the second inning and a three-run homer in the third. Corey Seager struck again with his third two-run homer of the World Series, his sixth postseason long ball.

Jonah Heim added a solo home run in the eighth, his third blast of the postseason.

Texas won its 10th consecutive postseason road game, the longest winning streak of its kind in baseball playoff history. Another road win in Game 5 on Wednesday would seal the title.

In a bullpen game for Arizona, the Rangers knocked around relievers Miguel Castro, Kyle Nelson and Luis Frias, all of whom allowed three runs without lasting one full inning. Frias was the only one of the three not charged with an earned run, but he gave up Travis Jankowski’s two-run double and Semien’s home run in the third.

Rangers starter Andrew Heaney (1-0) went five innings and allowed a run on four hits. He walked two and struck out three, exiting with a 10-1 lead. Heaney’s effort helped the Texas bullpen get extra rest.

The Rangers lost two key players to injuries from Game 3, after right fielder Adolis Garcia was diagnosed with a strained oblique muscle and Game 3 starting pitcher Max Scherzer also removed from the World Series roster due to back spasms. But Texas didn’t miss the power-hitting Garcia, who had 20 hits, eight home runs and 22 RBIs in the postseason.

The Diamondbacks scored their first run in the fourth on a sacrifice fly from Lourdes Gurriel Jr. They added four in the eighth on a sacrifice fly from Tommy Pham and Gurriel’s three-run home run, and they didn’t go quietly in the ninth, when Gabriel Moreno hit a two-run single off Texas closer Jose Leclerc.

Ketel Marte, the Diamondbacks’ best hitter in the postseason, had two hits to increase his postseason hitting streak to 20 games, the longest such streak in major league history.