Baseball: 10 Ks, 10th win

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Vernon Bryant/DMN
Texas Rangers starting pitcher Yu Darvish (11) pitches during the seventh inning of a MLB game between the Texas Rangers and Detroit Tigers on Tuesday, June 26, 2012 at Rangers Ballpark in Arlington. The Rangers defeated the Tigers 7-5.

ARLINGTON — For the seventh time this season, highly touted Japanese rookie Yu Darvish took the mound at home.

And for the seventh time this season, Darvish added a victory to his record to remain blemish-free in Arlington.

With Darvish on the mound, the Rangers scored four runs in the bottom of the fourth, propelling Texas to a 7-5 victory over Detroit at Rangers Ballpark in Arlington on Tuesday night. Darvish (10-4) racked up 10 strikeouts and remains undefeated at home.

The team tied a franchise record for the most wins through 75 games of the season. The Rangers (46-29) had an identical record in 2010, the first year of back-to-back World Series appearances.

It was Darvish’s fourth game of at least 10 strikeouts this season, which is the most in the American League and ties New York Mets pitcher R.A. Dickey for the most in the majors.

Ryan High School graduate and Tigers center fielder Austin Jackson went 1 for 3 with a walk, single and two runs scored. Rangers center fielder Josh Hamilton homered for the second time in as many games, going 1-for-4 on the evening.

For the second time in two nights, the Rangers found themselves in an early deficit against the Tigers.

Down 3-1 in the fourth inning, the Rangers jumped on Tigers rookie pitcher Drew Smyly. Adrian Beltre opened the fourth-inning rally with a single that barely went a few feet from home plate.

The Rangers tied the game on a single by Nelson Cruz, before going ahead for good on a single to right field by Yorvit Torrealba. Cruz slid safely into home plate, barely beating a throw from Detroit right fielder Brennan Boesch, giving the Rangers the lead.

Smyly exited the game after 4 2/3 innings. Smyly (2-3) allowed six runs on eight hits in his first start since returning from the disabled list.

Prior to his absence, which was caused by a blister on his left middle finger, Smyly had posted a 6.67 ERA in his last six starts, with a 1-2 record during that stretch.

The Tigers jumped out to a two-run lead in the first. Jackson walked and Miguel Cabrera was hit in the head with a pitch, giving the Tigers two base runners as Prince Fielder stepped up to the plate. Fielder doubled in Jackson and Cabrera, giving the Tigers a 2-0 lead.

Rangers second baseman Ian Kinsler hit his third leadoff home run in the bottom half of the first inning. It was Kinsler’s 23rd career leadoff home run, a club record.

After struggling with his pitching command early in the game, Darvish settled down and stifled Detroit’s offense. The 25-year-old right-hander pitched seven innings, allowing four earned runs on four hits.

In the bottom of the seventh inning, Darvish struck out Detroit’s Ramon Santiago. Darvish walked off the field as most of the 39,561 in attendance stood and bellowed his name from the stands.

Rangers reliever Mike Adams survived the eighth inning and kept the lead intact before Joe Nathan finished out the game.

The two teams will finish the three-game series tonight at 7:05 p.m.

BEN BABY can be reached at 940-566-6869. His e-mail address is bbaby@dentonrc.com .

 


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