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Moehler Hurls Gem For Tigers


Gabe Kapler gave Brian Moehler all the credit.

Moehler, backed by Kapler's home run, pitched a three-hitter for his first win since July 23 as the Detroit Tigers beat Texas 1-0 Monday night, stopping the Rangers' four-game winning streak.

"I got a timely hit, but he put together such an incredible start," Kapler said. "I could see (from center field) just how well his pitches were moving and where he was putting them. To shut out that lineup was awesome."

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Game Summary

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  • The Rangers, who had 10 or more hits in each of their previous nine games, were limited to two singles by Mark McLemore and another by Royce Clayton. They never advanced a runner past second base in Moehler's sixth career shutout, his second this year.

    Moehler (9-14) struck out two and walked two. He's 4-2 in his career against the Rangers, including 2-0 this year.

    "I seem to pitch better against teams that have veteran guys and guys everybody knows about," Moehler said. "It's always a challenge to pitch against those guys."

    Moehler was 0-5 in six starts since beating Boston on July 23, including a 3-2 loss at Seattle in his previous start.

    "I went into the game confident that I've been pitching well," Moehler said. "I just wanted to carry that over."

    Moehler's biggest inning was probably the fourth, when an error and a walk put two on with two outs. But he got Rafael Palmeiro, hitting .625 against him coming in, to fly out.

    "It was his game tonight," Tigers manager Larry Parrish said. "He just commanded the ball tremendously."

    He had to because Esteban Loaiza shut out the Tigers until Kapler started the seventh with a drive that just cleared the wall over left fielder Rusty Greer.

    "I was back and the ball tipped off the end of my glove," Greer said. "It was one of those things that I just didn't jump quite high enough."

    Loaiza (6-2) lost for the first time as a starter this year, allowing eight hits in 6 1-3 innings. Loaiza, who had been 6-0 as a starter, struck out four and walked three.

    Texas had won all eight of his starts coming in.

    "He made a lot of good pitches and got some big strikeouts," Rangers manager Johnny Oates said. "And one ball that Rusty just couldn't keep in the ballpark is the only run tonight."

    Kapler, who has slumped most of the second half, has seven hits in his last 11 at-bats including five for extra bases.

    Earlier Monday, Kapler was at Moehler's house for a Lamaze class with their expectant wives.

    "From 10:30 to 2:30," Moehler said. "Who would've thought we'd do that and then he'd hit a home run to win a game for me?"

    Notes

  • Moehler, who beat Minnesota 2-0 with a six-hitter June 25, got the eighth complete game of his career.
  • Dean Palmer was back in the Tigers' lineup after missing a game with a sore left hamstring.
  • This is the Rangers' only visit to Detroit this season and their final series in Tiger Stadium, where just 14 games remain to be played.
  • Juan Encarnacion, who was 5-for-11 (.455) previously against Loaiza, struck out three times against him Monday and another time against Tim Crabtree. He is in an 0-for-13 slump.
  • The Rangers were shut out for the sixth time this season. Their three hits matched a season low.

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