Red Sox pitcher Eduardo Rodriguez earned his 19th win Tuesday in Texas despite allowing seven runs in five innings. AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez

ARLINGTON, Texas — Eduardo Rodriguez was hardly deserving of win No. 19, but he got it anyway.

In his worst start of the season, Rodriguez labored in 90-degree heat, allowing seven runs on 11 hits and three walks in the Red Sox’s 12-10 victory against the Texas Rangers.

Still, Manager Alex Cora hung with him.

Desperate to get Rodriguez through five innings with the lead (his final start Sunday will give him a chance at win No. 20), Cora stuck with Rodriguez through 113 pitches.

So ridiculous was the outing that Rodriguez became the first major league pitcher this year to throw at least 110 pitches while allowing seven earned runs or more.

“It’s not even my win, that win is for the team, the lineup, everything they do, up they’re grinding to score more runs,” Rodriguez said. “I would say that’s not my win. The ones I had before were mine, but this one wasn’t mine.”

It was clear he didn’t have his best stuff on Tuesday.

When the Sox jumped all over 36-year-old Edinson Volquez for four runs in the first inning, Rodriguez gave them all back in the bottom of the inning.

The Sox added another run when Mookie Betts homered in the second inning, then Rodriguez gave it right back to make it 5-5.

“Change-up wasn’t even moving, it was like a cutter,” Rodriguez said. “Everything was straight to home plate. That’s what happens.”

Up 12-5 going into the bottom of the fifth, all Rodriguez needed was three outs.

The lead made it certain Cora was going to stick with his starter. The team has been talking about getting him to 20 wins for so long that the exhaustion of the conversation (combined with the Sox being well out of playoff contention) is starting to dull the accomplishment.

Rodriguez started the fifth by jumping ahead 0-2 on Danny Santana but couldn’t put him away. Santana roped a high fastball for a single. Rodriguez then hung a lazy change-up to Rougned Odor, who hammered it out of the park for a two-run homer.

Any other day, that would’ve ended his outing.

“If we were in the hunt or something like that, in the middle of the wild-card race, he was probably going to be out in the first inning,” Cora said. “He was off.”

After recording two outs, Rodriguez gave up back to back singles to extend the inning.

Cora jumped out of the dugout and walked toward his struggling pitcher but never lifted an arm to call for a reliever. Instead, they had a quick chat on the mound, and it was Rodriguez who patted his manager on the back as Cora walked away.

“He’s been the horse the whole season,” Cora said. “I wasn’t going to let it get ugly. You know, it was kind of ugly, but at the same time, he’s still our best pitcher. I told him, ‘Hey, you deserve this, I’ll give you one more, but you better get him out. This is it.’ I mean, I love that kid. I’ve been very honest with him from the get-go about as a staff, we push him because we know of the potential and I think it was the right move.”

Finally, Christian Vazquez put an end to the quest when he threw out Delino DeShields trying to steal second base, assuring Rodriguez would be the winner if the Sox kept the lead.

Betts was supposed to have Tuesday off but told Cora he wanted to play. He started the game and hit his 29th home run in the second inning but was removed in the third after hurting himself running into the wall.

“Coming out of the hotel, he tells me, ‘I’m going to play today because of you,'” Rodriguez said. “I said, ‘Thank you bro, appreciate it.'”

It was all in the name of getting Rodriguez to win No. 19.

The Red Sox did it, even if his ERA jumped from 3.53 to 3.76 and the chase for 20 is looking a little less like an accomplishment and a little more more like an obligation.

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