Adrian Beltre shakes slump as Rangers take down A's

ARLINGTON, Texas -- Ron Washington's new-look lineup jump-started the Texas Rangers' slumping offense.

Adrian Beltre hit a two-run homer and Colby Lewis pitched into the eighth inning in a rain-delayed 7-2 victory over the Oakland Athletics on Tuesday night.

Beltre, who was given a night off Monday and had gone 4 for 31 over his previous nine games, connected in the fifth to chase starter Brett Anderson (2-3).

Beltre batted sixth for the first time this season as Washington tried to change his team's luck after the Rangers hit .231 in their previous nine games. Beltre's first 35 starts this season had been at cleanup.

"It worked," Beltre said. "If that's going to work, I'll be happy to be hitting sixth. I don't make up the lineup. I just hope I'm going to be in there -- it doesn't matter where I hit. The lineup worked, so we'll probably do it again."

Texas designated hitter Michael Young, making the first start of his 12-year career in the No. 4 slot, went 3 for 4 with a two-run triple in the sixth.

Washington said he got the idea to change the lineup while watching a "Seinfeld" rerun on Monday night.

"We got on base 18 times," the manager said. "Michael was huge. Beltre was huge with a two-run bomb."

Will he come back with the same order for Wednesday's series finale?

"I'll see when I'm watching 'Seinfeld'," Washington said.

The Rangers are without injured sluggers Josh Hamilton and Nelson Cruz, and Washington decided to shake things up. He also moved regular No. 9 hitter Julio Borbon into the leadoff position, and normal leadoff man Ian Kinsler into the No. 3 hole.

Washington wrote out his 29th different lineup in 37 games this season.

Lewis (3-4) allowed one run and five hits over 7 1/3 innings. He walked one and failed to register a strikeout for the Rangers, who had lost seven of nine and 11 of 15.

The right-hander got 16 outs on balls hit in the air and threw a season-high 115 pitches.

Oakland's Cliff Pennington homered in the sixth before a 59-minute rain delay, and Conor Jackson added a sacrifice fly in the ninth.

The Rangers loaded the bases in the fourth against Anderson on two singles and a walk, and Mike Napoli walked to force in the game's first run. Craig Gentry's two-out single, his first RBI this season and the fifth of his career, made it 2-0.

In the fifth, Young doubled and Beltre ripped a 1-1 pitch into the left-field seats for his eighth homer and a 4-0 lead.

Anderson allowed four runs and six hits in 4 2/3 innings with five strikeouts and four walks.

Anderson had problems gripping the ball, saying after the game that it was like holding "a wet cue ball in the fourth. I had no control over where it was going. It was all over the place. Then I did a pretty good job of correcting it and getting some outs with some good defensive plays behind me, but made a terrible, terrible pitch to Beltre, a fastball middle-up."

David Murphy greeted reliever David Purcey with a single and scored on Napoli's double for a 5-0 lead.

Pennington's one-out solo homer in the sixth was his third of the season.

Lewis remained in the game after the sixth-inning delay, working out of a first-and-third jam when he retired Daric Barton on a lineout and Ryan Sweeney on a popup.

"He was still feeling good," Washington said. "He wanted to come back out. He came off the field and went back in the cage and kept his arm going. He wanted to save the bullpen, and he did. When he's able to command his fastball, that makes his stuff so much better. He looked good and strong."

Game notes
Anderson is 0-3 with an 8.62 ERA in four career road starts against Texas. ... Lewis had his first start without a strikeout since May 22, 2007, while a member of the A's, a string of 37 straight starts. ... CF Leonys Martin, the Cuban defector who signed a five-year, $15.5 million contract with Texas, will report to Double-A Frisco on Thursday. ... Oakland RHP Andrew Bailey, on the 15-day DL all season with a strained right forearm, pitched his first simulated game of the season Tuesday at Rangers Ballpark. Manager Bob Geren said his closer allowed one walk and no hits in 30 pitches to "six or seven hitters. It was decent for his first time out there like that. He threw all his pitches and he was throwing strikes." In Bailey's absence, Brian Fuentes, Grant Balfour and Brad Ziegler have all registered saves for the A's.