Getting hot and winning double-digit games seems to be the trend these days

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The Detroit Tigers won 12 straight. Atlanta reeled off 14 wins in a row. And the Los Angeles Dodgers set a team record with 15 straight road wins and won 11 of 12 going into Tuesday’s game against the New York Mets.

Now there’s the Texas Rangers who have also gotten hot, winning eight consecutive games and going 11-1 since July 29, through Monday. The Rangers beat Houston 2-1 on Monday night as Yu Darvish allowed just one hit in eight innings and struck out a career-high 15 batters.

“A win’s a win,” Darvish said through a translator. “I’m just glad I was a big part of this win.”

The only hit Darvish gave up was a home run by Carlos Corporan in the eighth.

The Rangers, who led Oakland by a game going into Tuesday’s contest, won their first seven games without slugger Nelson Cruz, who has been suspended by Major League Baseball for using performance-enhancing drugs.

Outfielder Alex Rios, obtained from the Chicago White Sox, has helped pick up some of the slack offensively, going 4-for-7 in his first two games with the Rangers, with two RBIs.

“I came here to try to contribute in any way possible and take advantage of everything that I’m given,” Rios said.

Tricked at third: The Tampa Bay Rays caught Dodgers baserunner Juan Uribe off-guard on Saturday with a hidden-ball trick. Following a sacrifice fly with the bases loaded in the fourth inning at Dodger Stadium, three runners moved up a base with Uribe taking third.

Rays first baseman James Loney took the throw from the outfield and threw the ball to shortstop Yunel Escobar, who threw to third baseman Evan Longoria. When Uribe took his foot off the bag briefly, Longoria tagged him and umpire Angel Hernandez called Uribe out.

“I made a mistake,” Uribe said. “I didn’t see that the guy had the ball until it was too late. I’ve never seen that before. Now, I know.”

Although it was an embarrassing play for Uribe, the Dodgers went on to win 5-0.

“It really was the one highlight of the day for us,” Longoria said.

StatsWatch: Here are the teams that have struck out at the plate the most times this season, with team leader, through Monday’s games –

  • Astros, 1,110 (Chris Carter, 155)
  • Braves, 1,012 (Dan Uggla, 146)
  • Mets, 994 (Marlon Byrd, 109)
  • Twins, 987 (Joe Mauer, 85)
  • Pirates, 981 (Pedro Alvarez, 138)
  • Indians, 962 (Mark Reynolds, 123)
  • Mariners, 961 (Raul Ibanez, 96)
  • Red Sox, 958 (Mike Napoli, 155)
  • Padres, 922 (Chase Headley, 107)
  • Reds, 920 (Jay Bruce, 141)

Quotable: “To me, personally, I think you should be out of the game if you get caught. It takes away from the guys that are working hard every day and doing it all-natural.” – Los Angeles Angels outfielder Mike Trout on players who use performance-enhancing drugs, during an interview with New York radio station WFAN.

Diamond Notes: A fan who fell from an upper-level platform at Atlanta’s Turner Field onto a parking lot died Monday night, police said. The man fell about 65 feet during a game between Atlanta and Philadelphia. A police spokesman said the fall appears accidental…Phillies manager Charlie Manuel won his 1,000th game on Monday night, 5-1 at Atlanta. “It’s definitely quite an achievement,” Manuel said. “Like I told the players, they’re the ones who make it happen.”…Detroit’s Miguel Cabrera has turned on the power recently, hitting home runs in four straight games and five of six through Monday. And he drove in a run in seven consecutive games, 12 in all. Cabrera had 37 homers going into Tuesday’s game, along with a major-league leading .366 average and 111 RBIs.

Copyright ã 2013 Bob Hurst. All Rights Reserved. Distributed by Hurst Sports Media.

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