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DALLAS (AFP) – Japan’s Yu Darvish struck out nine batters as the Texas Rangers stayed in the hunt in the race for the AL wild card berth by beating Houston 3-2.

Adrian Beltre hit a go-ahead solo homer in the sixth inning for the Rangers, who have taken the first two meetings of this three-game series.

They remained one game adrift of the Cleveland Indians for the second wild card spot with five contests to play.

Geovany Soto went two-for-four with an RBI in the win, which was credited to Neal Cotts for pitching a scoreless inning of relief behind Darvish in front of a crowd of 42,267 at Rangers Ballpark.

Darvish allowed four hits, two runs and walked four in 5 1/3 innings of work.

Photo Credit: AFP/ Ronald Martinez

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