David Murphy also had a double as a pinch-hitter in sixth inning. Two extra-base hits in the same inning by pinch-hitters is rare for the Rangers, considering they entered the game with 13 extra-base hits from their pinch-hitters since 2009, tied for the fewest in the league.
Rangers pinch-hitters are 6-for-27, giving them a .222 batting average. That isn't particularly outstanding, but it is an improvement over the past four seasons. From 2009-2012, Texas pinch-hitters batted a combined .182, the lowest in the American League. Their .119 average in 2009 was the 10th lowest by an AL team since 1974.
Manager Ron Washington said the improved pinch-hitting is the result of a better bench and the platoon he has been using with Murphy and Jeff Baker in left and Martin and Craig Gentry in center.
"I have a better selection, and the way I have to play those guys, it gives them more time to get ready," Washington said. "Their preparation is better."
T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, and follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.