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Rangers move closer in West

Posted: Friday, September 24, 2004

 

  Texas Rangers' David Dellucci looks on after getting a hit in the ninth inning off of Oakland Athletics closer Octavio Dotel that gave the Rangers the 5-4 come from behind win, Thursday, Sept. 23, 2004, in Arlington, Texas. AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez

Texas Rangers' David Dellucci looks on after getting a hit in the ninth inning off of Oakland Athletics closer Octavio Dotel that gave the Rangers the 5-4 come from behind win, Thursday, Sept. 23, 2004, in Arlington, Texas.

AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez

ARLINGTON, Texas David Dellucci's double drove home two runs to give the Texas Rangers a 5-4 win over Oakland on Thursday and a three-game sweep of the Athletics.

Texas, a surprise contender after four straight last-place finishes, moved within two games of the AL West-leading Athletics with 10 to play. The Rangers have won five in a row and 10 of 13.

Hank Blalock hit a solo homer with one out in the ninth, his 32nd to pull the Rangers to 4-3 against Octavio Dotel (4-2). Before Dellucci's winner, Michael Young doubled for his fourth hit and Mark Teixeira was intentionally walked, his team-record fifth walk of the game. Brian Jordan reached on a forceout.

Yankees 7, Devil Rays 3

NEW YORK Derek Jeter hit a leadoff home run, Jon Lieber pitched into the eighth inning and the New York Yankees clinched their 10th consecutive playoff berth.

John Flaherty also homered for the Yankees, who entered with a 3 1/2-game lead in the AL East over the second-place Red Sox. The Yankees go to Boston for a three-game series this weekend.

New York, given a standing ovation by fans following the final out, has the second-longest streak of consecutive trips to the playoffs, trailing only Atlanta, which was in position to clinch its 13th straight division title later in the day.

Indians 9, Twins 7

CLEVELAND Cliff Lee won for the second time since July 16 and rookie Grady Sizemore hit a two-run homer, leading Cleveland over Minnesota.

Lee (12-8) made it through 5 2-3 innings, allowing five runs and eight hits. The performance wasn't pretty, but the left-hander will take it after going 1-7 with a 10.03 ERA in his previous 11 outings.

Josh Bard homered and had three RBIs, and Coco Crisp drove in two runs for Cleveland.

Orioles 9, Red Sox 7

BOSTON David Newhan caught David Ortiz's bid for a three-run homer at the edge of the warning track for the final out, and Baltimore hung on, dropping Boston 4 1/2 games behind the New York Yankees going into this weekend's Fenway Park showdown.

With the Red Sox down 9-5 with two outs in the ninth and the bases loaded, Manny Ramirez came to the plate against B.J. Ryan. Ramirez hit a two-run single that brought up Ortiz.

Baltimore had broken a 5-all tie in the eighth on pinch-hitter Jose Leon's bases-loaded single.

White Sox 7, Royals 6

CHICAGO Joe Crede hit a game-winning three-run shot in the ninth for Chicago his second homer in two innings.

Aaron Rowand and Ross Gload also homered for the White Sox, who have won three straight games.

Trailing 6-1 in the eighth inning, the White Sox pulled to 6-4 going into the ninth. Kansas City closer Jeremy Affeldt (3-4) allowed a leadoff walk to Juan Uribe. Joe Borchard followed with a single, and one out later, Crede hit his third career game-ending homer.

Damaso Marte (6-5) pitched a scoreless ninth.



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