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Rangers homer for 15th straight game

ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) -- The power surge goes on in Texas.

The Rangers are in last place in the AL West, but they're second
in the majors to the New York Yankees in homers after Todd
Hollandsworth and Ivan Rodriguez went deep in a 5-3 win over the
Baltimore Orioles on Wednesday night.

Texas has homered in 15 straight games, hitting 30 in that span
to increase its season total to 185, just six fewer than the
Yankees.

"It's a byproduct of the lineup that we have put together,''
said Hollandsworth, the team's leadoff hitter. "Up and down,
anyone can hit it out.''

There have been a major league-leading 202 homers hit in 67
games at The Ballpark in Arlington, 108 by the Rangers. A home run
has been hit in 43 straight games there, including 84 in 19 games
since the All-Star break.

The Orioles have dropped five in a row following a four-game
winning streak.

Chan Ho Park (6-6) struck out eight in seven innings to win
consecutive decisions for the first time since signing a $65
million, five-year contract with the Rangers last December. He gave
up two runs on seven hits.

The wins have come in the right-hander's first two starts since
coming off the 15-day disabled list because of a blister on the
middle finger of his pitching hand. He gave up two runs on seven
hits over six innings at Yankee Stadium last Friday.

It was the second stint on the DL this season for Park, who was
never on the disabled list in his six seasons with the Los Angeles
Dodgers. He started Texas' opener and then missed six weeks with a
pulled right hamstring.

"The DL really didn't help me because my finger was ready after
about five days,'' Park said. "I was actually feeling better the
two starts before I went on it. But it's nice to win two games.''

Francisco Cordero got four outs for his sixth save.

Rangers shortstop Alex Rodriguez, who leads the majors with 47
homers, made an error in the ninth inning, just his sixth this
season and first in 53 games since June 27.

Hollandsworth's two-run homer put Texas ahead to stay 2-1 in the
third. It was his third homer in 12 games for Texas after hitting
11 in 95 games for Colorado earlier this season.

Ivan Rodriguez led off the sixth against John Stephens (1-3)
with his 12th homer to make it 4-2.

"John left some pitches up and they guessed right a few
times,'' Indians manager Mike Hargrove said. "He's a young pitcher
who is still learning. He's fine.''

Stephens, a 22-year-old rookie from Australia, gave up four runs
on eight hits over six innings. He struck out six, getting Alex
Rodriguez twice, and walked three.

"I faced a tough team and think I did OK against them,'' said
Stephens, who made his sixth start. "The two homers were up, and a
couple of other pitches, I made good pitches they got.''

Baltimore had a quick lead when Jerry Hairston hit a one-out
triple in the first and Chris Richards followed with a single. The
Orioles then loaded the bases, but Park got out of the jam without
allowing another run.

"I got focused after the first inning,'' Park said.

Park retired 11 of his next 12 batters, the only baserunner
coming when Tony Batista was hit by a pitch, until Melvin Mora and
Hairston had consecutive doubles in the fifth.

Hairston had three hits, lacking only a homer for the cycle, and
also made a nice defensive play at second base.

In the fourth, Hairston made a diving stab of Rafael Palmeiro's
grounder and then, while still on the ground, threw to first to
complete the out.

Alex Rodriguez led off the fourth with a single, moved to second
on Palmeiro's groundout and scored on Carl Everett's two-out
single. Michael Young added an RBI single in the eighth.

Jay Gibbons singled on the only pitch thrown by reliever Rich
Rodriguez to lead off the Orioles eighth and scored on Chris
Singleton's groundout against Jay Powell.

Game notes
The Orioles' five-game losing streak is one short of their
season high. ... Everett had hits in six straight at-bats before
striking out in the second inning. ... Rangers 3B Herbert Perry had
defensive gems on consecutive plays to end the sixth. He caught
Singleton's foul ball while falling against the rolled-up tarp near
the Orioles dugout, then made a diving backhand stab and threw
Geronimo Gil out at first.