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ARLINGTON, Texas — David Murphy put Texas ahead with a three-run home run, and the Rangers spoiled a three-homer game from Miguel Cabrera with an 11-8 victory against the Detroit Tigers on Sunday night.
Murphy’s shot just over the fence in right field gave Texas an 8-7 lead and answered a bases-loaded double from Prince Fielder that put Detroit up by two in the sixth inning after the Rangers had walked Cabrera intentionally even though first base wasn’t open.
Cabrera hit a three-run homer in the third and a solo shot in the fifth off Derek Holland, then went deep again in the eighth against Tanner Scheppers.
Cabrera, the 2012 AL Triple Crown winner and this year’s leader in average and RBIs, went 4 for 4 with 5 RBIs and has 11 homers, one off the AL lead.
Robbie Ross (2-0) pitched a scoreless seventh inning for the win, and Joe Nathan worked around a leadoff walk in the ninth for his 13th save. He has saved all 36 career chances against Detroit.
The Tigers led 4-1 after Cabrera hit a three-run homer over the Texas bullpen in right-center field in the third and added a solo shot to center off Holland, who had given up just two homers in 57-plus innings this year after setting a club record by allowing 32 homers last year.
The Rangers had wiped out that lead — and another one after Fielder’s double — and were ahead 11-7 when Cabrera hit another solo homer to center off Scheppers.
The Rangers overcame Detroit’s early lead with a four-run fifth highlighted by a pop fly double from Adrian Beltre that scored two and gave Texas a 5-4 lead.
Geovany Soto, who came in hitting .185, went 3 for 5 for the Rangers and had a fourth hit taken away when Andy Dirks caught a long drive to center while crashing into the wall.
Dirks’ catch on Soto ended a string of six straight Texas batters reaching in the sixth against Detroit reliever Jose Ortega (0-1), who hadn’t allowed a run in seven innings this season but couldn’t hold a 7-5 lead. He gave up four runs and five hits.
Soto started both Texas rallies with leadoff hits in the fifth and sixth innings.
The light-hitting catcher had a double to start the fifth and scored on a groundout by Elvis Andrus. Murphy, who also had a sacrifice fly, walked and Lance Berkman drove in Craig Gentry with a single before Beltre’s second double, which slipped out of Detroit shortstop Jhonny Peralta’s glove just inside the left-field line.
Texas manager Ron Washington scrambled to protect a 5-4 lead in the sixth, finally ordering reliever Jason Frasor to walk Cabrera with runners at first and second when he got behind 3-1. Washington brought in left-hander Michael Kirkman to face Fielder, but the lefty slugger ripped his second double to the wall in center field.
Soto started the sixth with a single, and Andrus walked with one out before Murphy pulled a pitch from Ortega to right to put Texas ahead for good.
Holland and Detroit starter Doug Fister both went just 4 2-3 innings, the shortest outing of the year for Holland. The left-hander gave up eight hits and four runs with three walks and six strikeouts. Fister allowed nine hits and five runs.
NOTES: Rangers 2B Ian Kinsler went on the 15-day disabled list with bruised ribs, and top prospect Jurickson Profar was brought up from Triple-A Round Rock. Leury Garcia made his third straight start in Kinsler’s place at second. ... Rangers C A.J. Pierzynski caught five innings in the first game of a rehab assignment at Double-A Frisco on Sunday. He went 0 for 3 with a strikeout and two groundouts. Pierzynski will catch RHP Colby Lewis’ rehab start with Frisco on Monday.