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September 08, 2012

Rangers 4, Rays 2 (F, 10)

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. -- Jurickson Profar delivered an RBI double down the first-base line with two outs in the 10th inning as the Rangers survived their third straight extra-innings game, winning this one 4-2 over Tampa Bay.
 
Josh Hamilton, who hit a two-run homer in the fourth, was hit by a Kyle Farnsworth pitch three batters later to push across an insurance run for Joe Nathan, who converted his 29th straight save.
 
An Ian Kinsler error allowed Tampa Bay to pull even in the eighth inning, spoiling a splendid start by Yu Darvish, and Mike Adams (5-3) stranded B.J. Upton at second in the ninth to give the Rangers another chance in extras after losing 3-1 on Friday in 11 innings and winning 5-4 on Thursday in 10 at Kansas City.
 
Darvish allowed two runs (one earned) in eight solid innings, and he struck out eight to break the Rangers' club rookie record for strikeouts in a season.
 
Darvish outpitched rookie Chris Archer, who was replacing Cy Young candidate David Price. It's hard to imagine Price pitching much better than Archer, who struck out a career-high 11 in seven innings.
 
But one of the four hits he allowed was a two-run homer in the fourth by Hamilton, who sent a towering drive to center field. Hamilton's homer was his 40th of the season.
 
The Rangers had a chance in the fifth, putting runners on first and third, but Ryan Roberts snared a one-hop smash by Profar and started an inning-ending double play.
 
Darvish allowed a hit to the Rays' first batter, Sam Fuld, but retired the next 14 hitters and had faced the minimum through five.
 
Jeff Keppinger started the sixth with a single. Roberts followed with a walk, and a wild pitch moved the runner to second and third. Fuld delivered an RBI groundout to trim the Rangers' advantage to 2-1.
 
Darvish, though, worked the seventh in only seven pitches and got the first out of the eighth on one pitch. But he walked Keppinger, and pinch-runner Rich Thompson stole second as Roberts struck out.
 
Pinch-hitter Carlos Pena followed, and hit a grounder into the infield shift. Kinsler, though, lost control of the ball as he rose to throw to first. Thompson never broke stride and scored easily to tie the game.
 
-- Jeff Wilson

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