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Colon perfect into 8th as Rangers win

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Photographs by AP/MICHAEL WYKE

Bartolo Colon carried a perfect game into the eighth inning as the Texas Rangers survived against the Houston Astros 3-1 in 10 innings Sunday.

AMERICAN LEAGUE

RANGERS 3, ASTROS 1 (10)

HOUSTON -- Bartolo Colon carried a perfect game into the eighth inning and Robinson Chirinos drove in all three runs for the Texas Rangers during their 3-1 victory over the Houston Astros in 10 innings Sunday night.

Colon, 44, turned back the clock and dominated the defending World Series champions for seven innings, retiring his first 21 batters in an entertaining pitchers' duel with Astros ace Justin Verlander.

Colon walked Carlos Correa on a 3-1 pitch to start the eighth before Josh Reddick lined an 0-2 delivery down the right-field line for a double that put runners at second and third, spoiling the no-hit bid as well.

Opposing fans in Houston gave Colon a standing ovation, and he clapped his bare hand softly against the outside of his glove. Two outs later, he was pulled with the score tied at 1.

A fan favorite all around the majors, the beefy right-hander nicknamed "Big Sexy" is on his ninth team in his last 11 seasons.

Chirinos homered in the third for the only hit off Verlander, who struck out 11 over eight innings in his longest outing this season. That was the lone hit in the game until Reddick doubled.

In the 10th, Chirinos launched a two-run double off Hector Rondon (1-1) that short-hopped the wall in straightaway center field. Jake Diekman pitched out of trouble in the bottom half for his first save.

With runners at the corners, Jake Marisnick struck out swinging to end it and slammed his bat to the ground. Marisnick was angry that Diekman's 3-1 pitch was called a strike even though it looked outside.

Keone Kela (2-0) tossed a scoreless ninth for the victory.

Colon threw 96 pitches, 66 for strikes, and kept the powerful Astros off balance by changing speeds and working expertly to both edges of the plate. He struck out seven in 7 2/3 innings but ended up with a no-decision after Yuli Gurriel tied the score at 1 with a sacrifice fly.

On his way from the mound to the dugout, the good-humored Colon gestured toward Reddick at third base with a quick flick of his hand.

Moments earlier, Colon's teammates left him all alone on the bench -- adhering to traditional superstition -- as he grinned and tossed a ball to himself.

Colon's longest no-hit bid came with Cleveland on Sept. 18, 2000, when he held the New York Yankees hitless for 7 1/3 innings. He finished with a one-hitter in a 2-0 victory at Yankee Stadium.

Kenny Rogers threw Texas' most recent no-hitter, in July 1994.

Houston has lost four of five since starting the season 9-2.

Texas scored eight of its 11 runs in the series on seven home runs. The Rangers totaled seven home runs in their 10 previous games.

RED SOX 3, ORIOLES 1 Andrew Benintendi (Arkansas Razorbacks) got three hits and Boston extended the best start in its 118-year history, beating visiting Baltimore at frigid Fenway Park.

ATHLETICS 2, MARINERS 1 Sean Manaea pitched seven strong innings and Jed Lowrie hit an early two-run home run off Felix Hernandez to lead Oakland over host Seattle.

NATIONAL LEAGUE

METS 3, BREWERS 2 Wilmer Flores hit a game-winning home run with two outs in the bottom of the ninth inning and New York beat visiting Milwaukee to improve the best start in team history to 12-2.

ROCKIES 6, NATIONALS 5 Ian Desmond hit a tiebreaking, two-out home run in the ninth inning against his former team, Charlie Blackmon drove in three runs and Colorado rallied to beat host Washington, ending a dispiriting homestand for the Nationals.

PIRATES 7, MARLINS 3 Starling Marte hiked his average 64 points, punctuating a 5-for-5 afternoon with a ninth-inning home run to help visiting Pittsburgh beat Miami.

CARDINALS 3, REDS 2 Carlos Martinez struck out a season-high 11 batters in seven shutout innings and Harrison Bader's two-run home run helped St. Louis complete their first four-game sweep at host Cincinnati since 1949.

DODGERS 7, DIAMONDBACKS 2 Clayton Kershaw struck out 12 and pitched two-hit ball over seven innings as Los Angeles ended an 11-game losing streak against visiting Arizona.

PADRES 10, GIANTS 1 Joey Lucchesi struck out nine in six innings, fellow rookie Christian Villanueva homered, doubled and drove in three runs, and host San Diego cruised past San Francisco to beat the Giants for the third consecutive game.

INTERLEAGUE

PHILLIES 10, RAYS 4 Aaron Altherr hit a three-run home run, Scott Kingery had a three-run double and visiting Philadelphia won its sixth in a row, topping Tampa Bay.

Sports on 04/16/2018

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