1 of 5 | Arizona Diamondbacks starting pitcher Merrill Kelly throws in the first inning against the Texas Rangers in Game 2 of the 2023 World Series on Saturday at Globe Life Field in Arlington, Texas. Photo by Ian Halperin/UPI | License Photo
Oct. 28 (UPI) -- Pitcher Merrill Kelly kept the Texas Rangers off-balance with deceptive offerings and meticulous control, allowing just three base runners to lead the Arizona Diamondbacks to a win Saturday in Game 2 of the World Series.
Kelly allowed just one run and made nine strikeouts in his seven innings of work in Arlington, Texas. The Rangers tied the best-of-seven game series with the 9-1 victory at Globe Life Field.
"That was probably one of the better ones," Kelly said on the Fox broadcast, when asked about his performance. "That was the goal coming in.
"If I execute, I have a pretty good chance. If I don't, it's going to be a pretty long night."
Diamondbacks second baseman Ketel Marte, who went 1 for 5 with two RBIs, also set a record in Game 2, recording a hit in his 18th-consecutive postseason game, the longest streak in MLB history.
Pinch hitter Emmanuel Rivera and outfielder Corbin Carroll also recorded two RBIs apiece for the Diamondbacks.
Catcher Gabriel Moreno put the first run on the scoreboard when he smacked a 3-2 sinker from Rangers starter Jordan Montgomery to center field for a 413-foot solo homer in the top of the fourth.
Diamondbacks left fielder Lourdes Gurriel Jr. added to the lead with an RBI single three at-bats later.
Designated hitter Mitch Garver cut into the deficit with a 404-foot leadoff homer off Kelly in the bottom of the fifth, but the Rangers never scored again.
Third baseman Evan Longoria and Carroll swatted RBI singles in the seventh for a 4-1 edge. Marte brought in two more runs with another single in the eighth. Carroll followed that at-bat by hitting the next pitch for another RBI single. Rivera plated the final two runs with a ninth-inning single.
The Diamondbacks recorded 16 hits and four walks. They struck out just twice. Designated hitter Tommy Pham went 4 for 4 with two runs scored. Gurriel and center fielder Alek Thomas recorded two hits apiece in the victory.
Diamondbacks relief pitchers Andrew Saalfrank and Luis Frias allowed just one hit and no runs over the final two innings. Montgomery surrendered nine hits and four runs over six innings for the Rangers.
No Rangers player reached base more than once.
The Diamondbacks will host the Rangers in Game 3 at 8:03 p.m. EDT Monday in Phoenix. Game 4 will be Tuesday at Chase Field. World Series games will air on Fox.
Arizona Diamondbacks starting pitcher Zac Gallen talks to reporters ahead of the World Series at Globe Life Field in Arlington, Texas on October 26, 2023. Photo by Ian Halperin/UPI | License Photo