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August 31, 2011

Final: Rays 4, Rangers 1

Alexi Ogando had another short outing this month, Koji Uehara gave up another run in a relief appearance and the offense was baffled all night by James Shields.

In the end, the Rangers suffered a 4-1 loss to the Tampa Bay Rays on Wednesday night at Rangers Ballpark in Arlington.

The Rays scored two runs off Ogando in the second with an RBI single by John Jaso, and on a bases-loaded walk by Ogando. In the third, the Rays added another run with an RBI single by Matt Joyce.

Ogando lasted only 2 2/3 innings, allowing three runs on five hits with two walks and three strikeouts. He retired the first four batters he faced before running into trouble.

Tampa Bay extended its lead to 4-0 with a solo home run by Johnny Damon off Texas reliever Koji Uehara. Uehara, who recently called his stint with the Rangers “negative,” has allowed runs in four of his last five outings. But, it’s worth noting, Uehara’s $4 million option for 2012 kicked in, as it was his 55th appearance.

That run didn’t really matter, though, as the Rangers’ offense couldn’t get anything going against Shields.

They had a chance in the first, loading the bases with one out. But Shields ended that threat by inducing an inning-ending double play grounder by Mike Napoli.

With two outs in the sixth, Elvis Andrus tripled to right-center, but Shields got out of it by striking out Josh Hamilton.

Shields threw eight scoreless innings, scattering four hits with one walk and seven strikeouts.

The Rangers had a brief two-out rally going against Rays reliever Kyle Farnsworth in the ninth. Micahel Young reached on an infield single and Napoli followed with a single to right. David Murphy then came through with an RBI single up the middle to avoid the shutout, but Farnsworth closed it out by striking out Yorvit Torrealba.

Finally, it’s worth mentioning that right-hander Mark Hamburger made his major league debut. He threw a perfect ninth inning for the Rangers.

-- Drew Davison

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