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April 21, 2012

Tigers 3, Rangers 2 (F)

DETROIT -- Justin Verlander allowed an unearned run in six innings, and Detroit scored three two-out runs in the fourth inning against a suddenly wild Neftali Feliz en route to a 3-2 victory that salvaged a doubleheader split and snapped the Rangers' eight-game winning streak.

The Rangers scored their run against Verlander in the fourth on a sacrifice fly by David Murphy in an inning that had a passed ball move Michael Young up a base. But Feliz couldn't hold the 1-0 lead in the bottom half despite opening the game with 10 consecutive outs.

He hit Brennan Boesch, but struck out Miguel Cabrera for the second out. Feliz then lost the strike zone, as he walked Prince Fielder, allowed an RBI single to Delmon Young, walked Alexi Avila and issued a two-run single to Ramon Santiago. Feliz also walked Don Kelly before striking out Brandon Inge to end a 42-pitch inning.

He had needed only 28 pitches to complete the first three innings, and used only 49 after the fourth en route to the first career complete game at any level.

The Rangers forced Verlander to throw 115 pitches, but they collected only four hits against the reigning American League MVP and Cy Young winner. Verlander was at his best after being handed the lead. He retired 6 of 7 hitters before handing the game to the bullpen.

The Rangers edged closer in the eighth when Murphy floated a single into left to again score Young. The tying run was at second base with one out in the ninth against Jose Valverde, but Elvis Andrus lined out to deep left field and Josh Hamilton struck out for a fourth time.

One of the three outs in the ninth was Mike Napoli, who saw his streak of games with a homer end at five.

All three of the Rangers' losses this season have been by one run.

-- Jeff Wilson


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