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September 25, 2012

Wrapping up Rangers' 3-2 loss to the Athletics

The Texas Rangers aren't expecting an easy path to a third consecutive American League West championship, and the Oakland Athletics are their closest pursuer.

And the A's aren't going away quietly.

A day after the Rangers won in walkoff fashion, the A's rebounded with an extra-inning, 3-2 victory on Tuesday to pull back to within four games of the Rangers in the division race with eight left to play.

"This is the time of year everyone is playing for a postseason berth so, no, no one is going to stop playing hard and we don't expect them to," infielder Michael Young said. "We expect these all to be tight games, but that's what makes it so much fun."

It was a tight game Tuesday.

The Rangers took a 2-0 lead in the first inning, but it could have been more as they stranded a runner on third with less than two outs. They also had a pair of costly base-running mistakes.

Oakland, meanwhile, scored two runs against spot starter Scott Feldman, filling in when Yu Darvish was a late scratch.

Feldman worked four-plus innings, and then the bullpen strung together five scoreless innings before Mark Lowe served up a go-ahead solo homer to A's No. 9 batter George Kottaras.

Lowe has allowed an extra innings, go-ahead homer in two of his last three appearances.

"Frustrating," Lowe said of his September. "It's really hard to sit out there for a long time and not pitch and get put in there and be on top of your game. It's not an excuse, but it definitely makes it harder to be consistent when you're not in there consistently."

Here are a few other postgame notes: 

* Koji Uehara worked a perfect seventh inning, and has retired all 16 batters he's faced in his last six appearances.

* Josh Hamilton had a pair of singles and is 3 for 7 with a home run, RBI and two runs since returning to the lineup on Monday.

* Michael Young had the Rangers' only extra-base hit of the night, a double in the fourth inning. He is batting .388 with six walks over his last 14 games.

-- Drew Davison

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