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Dickey tosses first shutout of career

DETROIT (AP) -- R.A. Dickey pitched out of two early jams, and
that set the tone for the Texas Rangers right-hander.

"When you do that early on, it gives you a lot of confidence
going into later innings," Dickey said.

Dickey threw a six-hitter for his first major league shutout,
and Alex Rodriguez homered for the third straight game as Texas
beat the Detroit Tigers 6-0 on Wednesday night for its eighth
straight win.

Dickey (8-5) also struck out a career-high seven batters in his
first complete game in the big leagues.

"He throws strikes, he works quickly, he throws a split,"
Rangers manager Buck Showalter said. "He threw a lot of fastballs
tonight."

The first two Detroit batters reached in the third inning on
singles by Ramon Santiago and Ben Petrick, and moved over on Danny
Klassen's sacrifice. Dickey then struck out Bobby Higginson, who
just missed a three-run homer as his drive down the right-field
line landed just outside the foul post. Dmitri Young then walked to
load the bases, but Dickey struck out Kevin Witt to end the threat.

In the second, singles by Young and Witt put runners on first
and third with no outs. Dickey struck out Craig Monroe, and Shane
Halter then bunted, but Young couldn't score and Halter was thrown
out at first. Matt Walbeck flied to right to end the inning.

"We had bases loaded, I ended up striking Witt out," Dickey
said. "I had first and third and got out of that with nobody out --
got out of that without a run given up."

Tigers manager Alan Trammell lamented the team's lost chances.

"We had first and third with nobody out and can't score, they
come back with two," Trammell said. "Next inning, second and
third with one out, we can't score again, they come back with two.
That kind of burst our bubble."

Rodriguez took over the American League lead in home runs with
his 36th, off reliever Wilfredo Ledezma in the eighth inning. He
has 12 homers in his last 20 games.

"I think I've been feeling pretty good at the plate,"
Rodriguez said. "I think the team is playing well. I think the
energy, everyone benefits from it."

Nate Cornejo (5-13) allowed four runs and seven hits over six
innings for the Tigers, who lost their eighth straight. It was also
the 13th time this season Detroit was shut out.

"I've got to take a lot of that blame because I'm not getting
the message across the way I'd like to," Trammell said. "And I'll
say I'm not doing the job. And I hope the they're saying that
they're not doing the job in there."

Texas opened the scoring with two runs in the third. Ramon Nivar
doubled into the left-field corner with two outs, and scored on
Michael Young's triple. Hank Blalock followed with an RBI single to
make it 2-0.

With one out in the fourth, Mark Teixeira hit his 19th home run
deep into the right-field stands. Laynce Nix followed with a
single, stole second and scored on Jason Jones one-hop drive off
the right-field fence to make it 4-0. Jones was thrown out at
second by right fielder Higginson.

Rodriguez made it 6-0 in the eighth with a two-run shot into the
left-field stands. He had been tied for the AL lead with the New
York Yankees' Jason Giambi.

Game notes
The eight-game winning streak is Texas' longest since June
19-25, 2002. ... Rodriguez extended his hitting streak to 11 games,
and he's hitting 16-for-43 (.372) during the stretch. ... Michael
Young's triple was his ninth of the season, moving him into third
place in the AL, behind Boston's Nomar Garciaparra and Minnesota's
Cristian Guzman.