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AL ROUNDUP

Yankees fall short in Texas

With his first swing, Alex Rodriguez silenced the booing fans who greeted his return to Texas. A few innings later, the sellout crowd had plenty to cheer about.

Laynce Nix hit a pair of two-run homers, Mark Teixeira doubled twice and scored three runs, and rookie Frankie Francisco struck out Rodriguez, helping the Texas Rangers rally from a three-run deficit to beat the New York Yankees, 9-7, last night.

In his first game against Texas since being traded in February, Rodriguez got off to a dramatic start by hitting a two-run homer in his first at-bat.

The Yankees stretched their lead to 4-1 in the fourth, but Texas went ahead with four runs in the bottom of the inning off Kevin Brown (5-1), who allowed five runs and 10 hits in 4 2/3 innings.

Texas led, 9-4, going into the ninth and Rodriguez helped New York made it close by drilling a one-out single off the glove of Alfonso Soriano, the player he was traded for. He scored on a single by Gary Sheffield.

Rodriguez finished 2 for 5.

Devil Rays 5, Indians 3 -- Jose Cruz Jr. went 4 for 4 with a home run and three doubles, and host Tampa Bay won consecutive games for the first time this season with a victory over Cleveland.

Relievers Trever Miller, Lance Carter, and Danys Baez combined for six scoreless innings for the Devil Rays, who needed 40 games to record back-to-back victories.

Athletics 7, Royals 0 -- Mark Mulder carried a no-hitter into the seventh and pitched his third straight complete game, and Bobby Crosby homered twice to lead host Oakland over Kansas City.

Angels 5, Orioles 3 -- Jose Guillen drove in the tying and go-ahead runs with a single during a four-run eighth inning and threw out a runner at the plate from left field in the fifth, helping host Anaheim beat Baltimore.

White Sox 8, Twins 2 -- Mark Buehrle pitched seven solid innings, and Timo Perez and Jose Valentin each hit two-run homers in visiting Chicago's victory over Minnesota.

Tigers 5, Mariners 0 -- Nate Robertson (3-3) allowed six hits in seven innings, Carlos Pena hit a two-run homer, and Eric Munson added a solo shot in Seattle.

. . .
In late games Thursday night, Mike Mussina pitched effectively into the eighth inning, and the New York Yankees got home runs from Hideki Matsui and Derek Jeter in a 6-2 victory over the host Anaheim Angels, and Jamie Moyer threw seven sharp innings and Ichiro Suzuki homered and drove in three runs, leading the host Seattle Mariners over the Baltimore Orioles, 11-0.

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