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September 25, 2012

Athletics 3, Rangers 2 (F, 10)

ARLINGTON – Yu Darvish was a late scratch for the Texas Rangers, but Scott Feldman produced a solid spot start on short notice and the bullpen strung together five scoreless innings.

Mark Lowe ended that string of scoreless innings, though, giving up a leadoff home run in the 10th inning. That proved to the difference as the Oakland Athletics prevailed in a 3-2 victory over the Texas Rangers on Tuesday night.

Oakland pulled back to within four games of Texas in the American League West standings with eight to play.

With the game tied 2-2 going into the 10th, the Rangers brought in Lowe, who had given up six runs over his last 2 2/3 innings stretching over four appearances.

And the troubling trend for Lowe continued. Oakland's No. 9 batter, George Kottaras, turned on a 3-2 fastball and drilled it over the right-field fence.

That spoiled what had been an impressive night put together by the Rangers’ pitching staff.

Feldman worked into the fifth inning, allowing two runs on four hits with three walks and five strikeouts over four-plus innings. Michael Kirkman came in and threw two scoreless innings followed by a scoreless frame by Koji Uehara and two more by Alexi Ogando.

The A’s pitching staff was just as effective, however, and benefited from a pair of base-running errors by the Rangers.

In the end, Texas went 1 for 6 with runners in scoring position and managed only two unearned runs on an error.

A’s starter Tommy Milone allowed both unearned runs over six innings, and four relievers closed it out. Oakland closer Grant Balfour saved it in the 10th by striking out Mitch Moreland and Ian Kinsler and getting Elvis Andrus to fly out.

-- Drew Davison

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