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June 17, 2012

Final: Rangers 9, Astros 3 (Texas sweeps Houston, has won six of its last seven)

Ron Washington isn't ready to say the Texas Rangers are back in their early season form, but they are on their way there.

The Rangers completed a sweep of the Houston Astros, pulling away for a 9-3 victory on Sunday afternoon at Rangers Ballpark. Texas has now won six of its last seven, its last three series and maintains at least a four-game lead on the Angels in the American League West standings.

"Right now, it's one day at a time," Washington said. "If we rattle off about 10, 11 games out of 12, 13 ... But right now, it's a day at a time."

The Rangers were backed by a strong start by Colby Lewis, who allowed one run on three hits with one walk and 10 strikeouts over seven innings. The offense, as it did the first two games of the series, came through with another big inning.

Trailing 1-0 going into the sixth, Texas scored seven runs -- all with two outs. Ian Kinsler hit a bases-clearning triple, and then Michael Young had a one-run single on a play that the Rangers scored twice. Elvis Andrus, who was on first, scored on a fielder's choice after the Astros made a lazy throw in from the outfield.

Adrian Beltre followed with a two-run home run, his 11th of the season. The Rangers cushioned their lead with single runs in the seventh and eighth.

Houston took a 1-0 lead in the fifth, scoring the game's first run on a single that Matt Downs flared into right field. The Astros scored their other two runs on a two-run single by Carlos Lee in the eighth off Rangers reliever Tanner Scheppers.

-- Drew Davison

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