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Bacsik shines in Rangers debut

DETROIT (AP) -- Long bus trips and frequent fast food in the
minor leagues pushed Mike Bacsik to think about doing something
else with his life.

The 26-year-old pitcher is glad he didn't.

Bacsik allowed four hits over seven innings in his Texas debut,
and Laynce Nix hit a two-run homer to lead the Rangers over the
Detroit Tigers 8-0 Wednesday night.

Brought up from Triple-A Oklahoma last week, Bacsik retired nine
straight before Alex Sanchez singled leading off the fourth. The
Tigers had two on and no outs, but Bacsik got out of the jam by
striking out Ivan Rodriguez, and retiring Dmitri Young and Carlos
Guillen on flyouts.

"There are a lot of days in Triple-A that you have to fight
through putting the negative thoughts of not doing this in your
mind," Bacsik said. "But then something like this happens, and
it's worth it."

Bacsik was 4-4 with a 6.12 ERA in 12 starts and seven relief
appearances in parts of three seasons with the New York Mets and
Cleveland. His father, Mike, pitched for the Rangers from 1975-77,
and they are the first father-son duo in Rangers history.

"It's hard to not watch a situation like that and not get
emotional, knowing what it means to Mike and his family," Rangers
manager Buck Showalter said.

Showalter said Bacsik will start again, on Monday at Baltimore.

"That sounds good," Bacsik said. "I'm pretty excited."

Texas won its second straight game after losing five of seven.
Detroit lost its third in a row and was shut out for just the
second time this year, the first since April 15.

"(Bacsik) mixed it up well, but we should've hit him better
than we did," said Brandon Inge, who was 0-for-3. "He did an
unbelievable job of throwing fastballs in changeup counts, and
changeups in fastball counts."

Bacsik (1-0), who signed with the Rangers in December, struck
out four and walked none. He became the 14th pitcher to start for
Texas this season, the eighth who spent time in the minor leagues.

Carlos Almanzar and Joaquin Benoit followed with hitless relief,
completing the sixth shutout of the season for the Rangers.

Jason Johnson (8-9) gave up five runs and 10 hits, tying a
season high, over six innings. He was 4-1 in his previous eight
starts.

"My control wasn't there. I missed my spots by a lot," Johnson
said. "It was just one of those nights that I want to forget
about."

Johnson was relieved by John Ennis, who gave up three runs and
four hits over 1 1/3 innings in his debut with Detroit, his second
major league appearance. Ennis, brought up Tuesday from Triple-A
Toledo, was chased following Gerald Laird's RBI single the eighth.
Roberto Novoa then gave up Eric Young's RBI single and Hank
Blalock's sacrifice fly.

In the second inning, Gary Matthews and David Dellucci hit
back-to-back doubles, and Dellucci scored on Nix's 11th homer to
put the Rangers ahead 3-0. Young added an RBI single in the fifth.

The Rangers maintained their cushion with defense in the home
half. After Rondell White's leadoff single, they turned a double
play and Nix made a diving grab in center.

Dellucci singled and scored on Laird's grounder in the sixth for
a 5-0 lead.

In the home half, Omar Infante hit a bloop single to center, but
Sanchez -- running from third -- was thrown out at home by Nix.

"That was big to make sure there wasn't a change in momentum,"
Showalter said.

Game notes
Texas RHP Jeff Nelson might go back on the DL Thursday
after feeling discomfort near his right elbow while throwing in the
bullpen Wednesday night, Showalter said. Nelson was on the DL from
May 13-July 25 after having surgeries on his right knee and right
elbow. ... Rodriguez, who is hitting .343 and no longer leads the
AL in batting average, was 0-for-3 for the second straight game.
... Three of Texas' ailing pitchers are expected to make rehab
starts on Thursday: Chan Ho Park (lower back) at Triple-A; Mickey
Callaway (nerve injury) and Doug Brocail (hamstring) in a
doubleheader at Double-A Frisco.