Holland tosses three-hit shutout to complete sweep

Holland tosses three-hit shutout to complete sweep

ARLINGTON -- Texas starter Derek Holland mastered the Orioles in a 6-0, three-hit shutout Sunday, earning a series sweep for the surging Rangers and heaping more misery on a Baltimore club that has begun to see its postseason hopes fade over the past two weeks.

"He was terrific," Rangers third baseman Adrian Beltre said of Holland. "He was spotting his fastball in and out, his breaking ball was absolutely magnificent, he was making the guys chase, he was ahead in the count the whole game. It was huge for us."

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Brittany Ghiroli is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, Britt's Bird Watch, follow her on Facebook and listen to her podcast. Dave Sessions is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Odor sets sights on return vs. Padres

Rangers second baseman recovering from torn fingernail

Odor sets sights on return vs. Padres

ARLINGTON -- Rougned Odor continues to get closer to returning to the Rangers' lineup, manager Jeff Banister said Sunday. The second baseman could be ready to go when the Rangers visit the Padres on Monday, six days after he tore a fingernail on his throwing hand while fielding a ball.

Banister said throwing accurately could be difficult for Odor, who spent some time before Sunday's game working on his throwing.

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Dave Sessions is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Holland's gem gives Texas hope for stretch run

Starter in vintage form with three-hit shutout of Orioles

Holland's gem gives Texas hope for stretch run

ARLINGTON -- It may be tempting right now for the Rangers to imagine where they'd be in the standings if Derek Holland had been with them the whole season.

Had he been healthy and made another 20-something starts like he did Sunday in a 6-0 victory over the Orioles, the Rangers might well be leading the American League West right now.

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Dave Sessions is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Lewis opens road trip seeking 15th victory

Lewis opens road trip seeking 15th victory

Colby Lewis will usher in the Rangers' longest road trip of the season as they open in San Diego on Monday, while vying for his 15th win, which would be a career high for the 36-year-old right-hander.

The Padres will counter with righty Tyson Ross, who has the lowest ERA in San Diego's rotation (3.42) and did not allow an earned run in a July victory over the Rangers in Arlington.

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Dave Sessions is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Rangers feeling Wild with third straight win

Rangers feeling Wild with third straight win

ARLINGTON -- The Rangers maintained their grip on the second Wild Card playoff spot in the American League on Saturday night, while the Orioles continued to slide in the other direction.

Bobby Wilson's RBI double put the Rangers ahead in the bottom of the sixth inning, and they held on for a 4-3 victory over the Orioles at Globe Life Park. The Rangers, with their third straight win, have a 1 1/2-game lead for that second spot; the Orioles, with their ninth loss in the last 10 games, are now 4 1/2 games behind in the Wild Card race.

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T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger and listen to his podcast. Brittany Ghiroli is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, Britt's Bird Watch, follow her on Facebook and Twitter @britt_ghiroli, and listen to her podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Kela has been electric out of the bullpen

Kela has been electric out of the bullpen

ARLINGTON -- The Rangers reinforced their bullpen with non-waiver Trade Deadline deals for left-hander Jake Diekman and right-hander Sam Dyson. Bringing back rookie right-hander Keone Kela from his short interlude at Double-A Frisco has also helped.

The Rangers gave Kela 10 days off in Frisco from Aug. 1-10 to ease his workload and he has been outstanding since his return. On Saturday night, which came to an end with closer Shawn Tolleson's dramatic strikeout of Baltimore's Manny Machado, Kela may have procured the two biggest outs in a 4-3 victory.

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T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Running remains an issue for Hamilton

Running remains an issue for Hamilton

ARLINGTON -- The official word on Rangers left fielder Josh Hamilton as he recovers from a sore left knee: He is improving, but he is not ready.

That's the assessment of both Hamilton and manager Jeff Banister just two days before Hamilton is eligible to come off the disabled list. Hamilton has been taking batting practice, which suggests he is close to being able to at least pinch-hit, but running is still the issue.

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T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Beltre tips liner with glove, makes barehanded snag

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Beltre tips liner with glove, makes barehanded snag

As fans, we've become accustomed to routinely marveling at the exploits of pro ballplayers; we're 90 percent sure that's what's powering Twitter right now. For the athletes themselves, though, it's tough to get too worked up about all of the everyday brilliance they make look so routine -- it's quite literally just part of a day's work, after all. 

Which is why Elvis Andrus is so refreshing (you know, plate discipline notwithstanding). Early in Saturday's Orioles-Rangers game, Andrus' partner-in-crime Adrian Beltre made a preposterous grab, deflecting a line drive with his glove before calmly snatching it with his bare hand. It's the kind of play us laypeople couldn't make in a million years, so Andrus took the time to check the Jumbotron and make sure that, yes, he did really just do that.

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Texas holds steady in WC with win over O's

Texas holds steady in WC with win over O's

ARLINGTON -- Rangers starter Cole Hamels had one shaky inning of control issues but was otherwise brilliant, holding the Orioles to two hits over eight innings in a 4-1 victory on Friday night.

The Rangers' victory was their 11th in their last 15 games, and they remain a half-game ahead of the Twins in the American League Wild Card race. The Orioles have lost eight of their last nine and are now 3 1/2 games behind the Rangers.

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T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger and listen to his podcast. Brittany Ghiroli is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, Britt's Bird Watch, follow her on Facebook and Twitter @britt_ghiroli, and listen to her podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Gimenez's power surge a boon to Rangers

Gimenez's power surge a boon to Rangers

ARLINGTON -- Catcher Chris Gimenez has four home runs in his last 11 games after hitting six in his first 185 Major League games. So where is all this power coming from?

"Who cares?" Gimenez said with a big smile after the Rangers' 4-1 victory over the Orioles on Friday night.

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T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Profar plays in first game since 2013

Profar plays in first game since 2013

ARLINGTON -- Infielder Jurickson Profar is back on the baseball field.

Profar has been assigned to Class A Hickory on a rehab assignment and went 1-for-4 with a single in his first game, on Thursday night, the first time he has played in a game since Sept. 27, 2013. He has missed two years with a torn muscle in his right shoulder, an injury that was surgically repaired in February.

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T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Rangers call up lefty Faulkner, option Martinez

Rangers call up lefty Faulkner, option Martinez

ARLINGTON -- The Rangers have had their eye on left-hander Andrew Faulkner ever since he made a couple of cameo appearances in Spring Training.

Back then they saw Faulkner as a possible candidate for their bullpen, and on Friday they made it a reality. Faulkner was called up from Triple-A Round Rock, and right-hander Nick Martinez was sent down after just one day in the bullpen.

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T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

DeShields turns Bautista's error into 'homer'

DeShields turns Bautista's error into 'homer'

ARLINGTON -- The Rangers clung to a one-run lead through 6 1/2 innings on Thursday afternoon, mainly because of some tough, gritty pitching in the Texas heat.

Then they got a huge break on the kind of "home run" usually reserved for Little League and it gave them the margin they needed for a 4-1 victory over the Blue Jays.

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T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Venable defies gravity on Statcast catch

Venable defies gravity on Statcast catch

ARLINGTON -- Rangers left fielder Will Venable made his first start in five games with a right-hander on the mound for the Blue Jays and made a terrific defensive play in the second inning of a 4-1 win on Thursday afternoon at Globe Life Park.

The Blue Jays had Ben Revere on first with two outs when Cliff Pennington sliced a drive to left field. The ball was not hit deep, but Venable was playing shallow and had to race straight back to catch up. At the last moment, he made a diving catch going away from home plate. If he doesn't catch the ball, Revere would have scored easily.

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T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Cool running: Rangers snap Jays' streak

Cool running: Rangers snap Jays' streak

ARLINGTON -- Tough pitching on a hot afternoon helped the Rangers avoid a sweep as they cooled off the Blue Jays with a 4-1 victory on Thursday.

Five Rangers pitchers combined for the victory, led by starter Yovani Gallardo. He held the Blue Jays scoreless for 5 1/3 innings before relievers Keone Kela, Jake Diekman, Sam Dyson and Shawn Tolleson battled their way through 3 2/3 innings. The Blue Jays had eight baserunners on in the last four innings, but they managed just one run. Toronto was 1-for-8 with runners in scoring position on the afternoon.

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T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger and listen to his podcast. Gregor Chisholm is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, North of the Border, follow him on Twitter @gregorMLB and Facebook, and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

MLB.com Columnist

Tracy Ringolsby

Banister's influence shouldn't be overlooked

Banister's influence shouldn't be overlooked

ARLINGTON -- There's nothing about the Rangers that really computes. Not that they care.

Texas somehow pulled out a 4-1 victory against the American League East-leading Blue Jays at Globe Life Park on Thursday afternoon, and it now has sole possession of the second AL Wild Card spot after the Twins lost to the Rays, 5-4.

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Tracy Ringolsby is a columnist for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Gallardo picks up 100th career victory

Gallardo picks up 100th career victory

ARLINGTON -- The Rangers had extra reason to celebrate a 4-1 victory over the Blue Jays on Thursday afternoon in the clubhouse afterwards.

The Rangers wanted to salute starter Yovani Gallardo, who pitched 5 1/3 scoreless innings in the August heat and earned his 100th career victory.

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T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Martinez called up, Patton optioned

Martinez called up, Patton optioned

ARLINGTON -- The Rangers have called up Nick Martinez from Triple-A Round Rock to reinforce their bullpen and sent down Spencer Patton.

Martinez has been a reliever on occasion in the past, but he has been used only as a starter this season. Right now, he is needed as a long reliever because the Rangers used Anthony Bass for three innings in a 12-4 loss to the Blue Jays on Wednesday.

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T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Rangers fall to Jays, slip out of WC spot

Rangers fall to Jays, slip out of WC spot

ARLINGTON -- Justin Smoak hit a two-run home run in the fifth to put the Blue Jays ahead for good and Edwin Encarnacion hit a grand slam in the sixth in a 12-4 victory over the Rangers on Wednesday night. The score was 2-2 when Smoak connected off Rangers starter Colby Lewis for his 13th home run of the season.

The Blue Jays, with their fifth straight win, now lead the Yankees by two games in the American League East. The Rangers, with their second straight loss to the Blue Jays, fell a half-game behind the Twins for the second AL Wild Card spot.

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T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger and listen to his podcast. Gregor Chisholm is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, North of the Border, follow him on Twitter @gregorMLB and Facebook, and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Banister: Texas must 'come out swinging'

Banister: Texas must 'come out swinging'

ARLINGTON -- The Rangers have lost two straight to the Blue Jays, and manager Jeff Banister was quite candid about the meaning of Thursday's series finale.

"When you get punched in the mouth twice, you've got to come out swinging," Banister said after Wednesday's 12-4 loss. "To go where we want to go, we've got to come back and play well tomorrow. We have to have our 'A' game. We have to be focused tomorrow and find a way to grind one out however it goes. We can't give another one away."

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T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Rangers claim reliever Rearick off waivers

Rangers claim reliever Rearick off waivers

ARLINGTON -- The Rangers have acquired reliever Chris Rearick on a waiver claim from the Padres, and the left-hander has been assigned to Triple-A Round Rock.

Rearick pitched in five games for the Padres this season. In three innings, he allowed four runs on six hits, including two home runs. He walked two and struck out four.

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T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Texas misses chance to gain in Wild race

Texas misses chance to gain in Wild race

ARLINGTON -- The Blue Jays rallied for two runs in the top of the ninth inning and stunned the Rangers with a 6-5 victory on Tuesday night. The Blue Jays, with their fourth straight win, are now 15 games over .500 for the first time since 1993 and in sole possession of the American League East lead thanks to the Yankees' loss to the Astros.

Rangers closer Shawn Tolleson issued two walks to Russell Martin and Ben Revere while trying to protect a one-run lead and suffered his second blown save of the season. Troy Tulowitzki drove in the tying run with a two-out single, and the go-ahead run scored on a throwing error by third baseman Adrian Beltre.

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T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger and listen to his podcast. Gregor Chisholm is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, North of the Border, follow him on Twitter @gregorMLB and Facebook, and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Rare lapses from Tolleson, Beltre lead to 'L'

Rare lapses from Tolleson, Beltre lead to 'L'

ARLINGTON -- Shawn Tolleson had never done this over two seasons and 121 relief appearances with the Rangers. He had never unintentionally walked two batters in a game.

Tolleson wasn't really sure why it happened on Tuesday night, but happen it did in the ninth inning, leading to two runs and a blown save in the Rangers' 6-5 loss to the Blue Jays.

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T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Darvish reports no problems in TJ recovery

Darvish reports no problems in TJ recovery

ARLINGTON -- So far so good for Rangers pitcher Yu Darvish as he makes his long recovery from Tommy John surgery.

Darvish has resumed his throwing program, and said on Tuesday that he has had no problems. He made 25 throws from 60 feet on Monday in what was his fourth session since resuming his throwing program last week.

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T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

MLB.com Columnist

Tracy Ringolsby

Hamels having profound effect on Rangers

Below .500 at time of trade, Texas now in thick of AL Wild Card hunt

Hamels having profound effect on Rangers

ARLINGTON -- Cole Hamels grew up in San Diego. He still has a passion for surfing.

Hamels was a first-round Draft choice of the Phillies in 2002. He envisioned spending his entire career with the franchise when he signed a seven-year contract that included a club option for 2019.

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Tracy Ringolsby is a national columnist for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Third catcher on Rangers' wish list

Third catcher on Rangers' wish list

ARLINGTON -- Major League rosters can expand up to 40 players on Sept. 1, and one of the Rangers' priorities is to add a third catcher. They just aren't sure where they will find one.

Robinson Chirinos (strained left shoulder) and Carlos Corporan (sprained left thumb) are both on the disabled list, and the Rangers aren't sure if either will be ready by the beginning of September.

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T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Rangers winning with speed, aggressiveness

Stolen bases, willingness to put pressure on defense makes up for lower power numbers

Rangers winning with speed, aggressiveness

ARLINGTON -- The bunt and the threat of the bunt came up big for the Rangers this past weekend in Detroit.

On Saturday, Delino DeShields came to the plate in a scoreless game with one out in the third inning, and he slapped a ground ball past Tigers third baseman Nick Castellanos. Detroit was playing in to protect against the threat of a bunt from the speedy DeShields, and Castellanos couldn't react quick enough to field the grounder. The single started a four-run rally in the Rangers' 5-3 victory.

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T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Stubbs, Rangers agree to Minor League deal

Outfielder released by Rockies after batting .216 with five homers in 51 games

Stubbs, Rangers agree to Minor League deal

ARLINGTON -- The Rangers have signed veteran outfielder Drew Stubbs to a Minor League contract and assigned him to Triple-A Round Rock.

Stubbs, 30, batted .216 with five home runs and 10 RBIs in 51 games with the Rockies this season before he was designated for assignment on Aug. 12 and unconditionally released on Saturday.

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T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.