Cleveland beats Texas, Tejeda, 8-3

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ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) -- All seems to be well with the Cleveland Indians one night after their All-Star catcher had an argument with a starting pitcher.

Victor Martinez, Josh Barfield and Jason Michaels drove in two runs apiece to help the Indians beat the Texas Rangers 8-3 Sunday night.

Barfield went 3-for-4 and scored two runs and Casey Blake also had three hits for Cleveland, which bounced back one night after Martinez and teammate Cliff Lee had an animated discussion during an 8-5 loss to Texas. The Indians also held a closed-door meeting after Saturday night's game.

Martinez did not comment on any disagreement with Lee.

"It was nothing," Martinez said of the meeting. "Nothing to worry about. We try to play hard every day. It was just nice to win."

Martinez, an All-Star catcher, made just his 15th start of the season at first base. His RBI single in the fifth put Cleveland ahead 3-0 and ignited a three-run inning. He added a sacrifice fly in the eighth.

Cleveland won three of four against the Rangers and moved within a game of first-place Detroit in the American League Central.

Indians starter Paul Byrd (8-4) did not allow a hit until Marlon Byrd tripled with two outs in the fourth. He allowed two runs and three hits in 5 2-3 innings.

Byrd had lost his past four starts on the road against the Rangers. He also had a 9.45 ERA in those outings.

"I didn't really shake the trouble in this park," Byrd said. "I walked three and ran into a lot of trouble. I'm very glad we got the win but I'm a little frustrated with the finish, but we picked up a game on Detroit and I'm fired up about that."

Robinson Tejeda (5-9) allowed five runs, three earned, and five hits in five innings for Texas. Since going 3-1 in April, Tejeda is 2-8 with a 7.93 ERA.

Tejeda acknowledged he's having problems repeating his pitching motion.

"It's hard right now because I'm not getting deep in the game," Tejeda said. "My confidence is still good. The only thing bothering me is the walks. It seems like every time I walk someone they score."

Before the game, Cleveland manager Eric Wedge downplayed Saturday night's players-only meeting. When asked about possible tension between Martinez and Lee, he said: "They had a discussion during the game, but nothing beyond that."

Wedge said Saturday's meeting was good for his team.

"I think it's important for the guys to get together," Wedge said. "They're such a close group anyway. They wanted to get together (Saturday) and that's a good thing. I encourage that."

Texas slugger Sammy Sosa was not in the starting lineup after getting hit in the head by a pitch Saturday. Sosa said before the game that he was fine, and manager Ron Washington said he plans to have Sosa back in the lineup Monday night against the Seattle Mariners.

Rangers catcher Gerald Laird left the game in the second inning with a bruised left hand after he was hit on an inside pitch from Byrd. Preliminary X-rays were negative and Laird's status is day to day.

Adam Melhuse replaced Laird behind the plate.

Third baseman Travis Metcalf's error in the fourth inning put runners on second and third for Barfield, who hit a two-out, two-run single to left to put Cleveland ahead 2-0.

Blake led off the fifth with a double, and Martinez followed with an RBI single to center.

Jhonny Peralta walked one out later. After a groundout, Michaels lined a two-run single to left to give the Indians a 5-0 lead.

Cleveland added another run in the sixth when Barfield scored on a wild pitch.

Byrd escaped trouble in the fifth when he walked the first three batters. But Byrd struck out Metcalf and induced Kenny Lofton's double-play grounder.

"That was a big missed opportunity," Washington said. "Byrd is not known for walking people. We just couldn't cash in."

Texas got within 6-3 in the sixth inning on RBI doubles from Frank Catalanotto and Melhuse, and a run-scoring single from Brad Wilkerson.


Cleveland 1B Ryan Garko, who has a 15-game hitting streak, did not play. ... Marlon Byrd had three hits.