March 21, 2016

SURPRISE, Ariz. (AP) Nolan Arenado had his eighth straight multihit game and raised his batting average to .629 this spring as the Colorado Rockies beat the Texas Rangers 9-6 Monday.

Arenado, who hit 42 home runs with 130 RBIs last year and won his third consecutive Gold Glove at third base, went 2 for 2 with a walk and has a hit in all 13 games he has played this spring. He doubled in the first for his fifth consecutive game with an extra-base hit.

''It's pretty amazing what he's doing right now,'' Rockies manager Walt Weiss said. ''He's such a great player, nothing surprises me anymore.''

Weiss gave Arenado the option not to play, skipping the cross-town hour-plus trip from Scottsdale.

''He was supposed to have the day off, but he goes, `I want to play,''' Weiss said. ''He chose to play three days in a row and travel to Surprise. As we all know, that's Nolan.''

How would Rockies starter and winning pitcher Chad Bettis pitch Arenado?

''Very carefully,'' he said. ''He's on fire. That's the kind of guy he is. When he's hot, it's hard to get him out. To look over there and see him at third base, it's an honor.''

Gerardo Parra and Cristhian Adames hit back-to-back home runs in the sixth inning off Jeremy Guthrie, who is trying to earn a spot in the Rangers rotation. Guthrie allowed five runs, three earned, on five hits in three innings.

''I liked the pitches he threw away and how he mixed,'' Rangers manager Jeff Banister said. ''He tried to go in on Parra and didn't quite get it there. These guys, when you make that mistake, will make you pay. I did like the mix of pitches. His velocity is up to 92 mile per hour, so there is something there to work with.''

Bettis yielded three runs on seven hits, walked none and struck out three.

''That's the best I've felt all spring,'' Bettis said.

Rangers left-hander Martin Perez allowed four runs on seven hits and two walks in 4 1-3 innings.

Ryan Rua went 3 for 4 and tops the Rangers with 27 total bases, while Rougned Odor had two hits, including a two-run double.

STARTING TIME

Rockies: Bettis gave up three runs in the third, which included two bunt singles.

''It's part of baseball,'' Bettis said. ''That's the way they decided to go. It's tough to defend against. You can't do anything about it. You hope someone messes up, bunts a little too hard and doesn't place it the way they did that inning.''

Rangers: Perez threw 73 pitches, 44 for strikes, to 21 batters.

RANGERS REDUCE ROSTER

Highly-touted prospects Joey Gallo, Jurickson Profar and Nomar Mazara were optioned to Triple-A Round Rock as the Rangers made nine roster moves.

Gallo, 22, led the club with three home runs, while Mazara, 20, hit .375 with eight RBIs. Profar, 23, returned after missing most of the past two years with a shoulder injury that required surgery.

''They understand they are an important group of players,'' Rangers manager Jeff Banister said. ''(They are) that wave of next players as things happen and we have needs.''

The Rangers also optioned LHP Alex Claudio and RHP Anthony Ranaudo to Round Rock and assigned non-roster invites OF Lewis Brinson, RHP Francisco Mendoza and infielders Ryan Cordell and Drew Robinson to minor league camp. The Rangers have 43 players left in camp.

TRAINER'S ROOM

Rockies: RHP David Hale (strained hamstring) appeared in his first game, allowing one run on three hits and a walk in 1 2/3 innings. ''He got a little shaky the first inning, but kept it together,'' Weiss said. ''He got to his pitch count (35) in the second inning, so that's why I had to go get him.''

Rangers: 1B Ike Davis (mild right knee sprain) remains sidelined.

UP NEXT

Rockies: RHP Jon Gray starts against the Brewers.

Rangers: RHP Colby Lewis will face the Padres.

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