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Guzman Concentrates and Beats Rangers

From Associated Press

If Juan Guzman was distracted he certainly didn’t show it.

Guzman, expecting to be traded at any moment, pitched eight shutout innings Thursday as the Toronto Blue Jays defeated the Texas Rangers, 1-0, at Toronto.

“I’ve been thinking that this was my last game,” Guzman said. “I’m going to miss this place because can you imagine I’ve been here eight years, all my friends, plus this is one of the best organizations there is.”

Guzman (6-12) gave up five hits, struck out three and walked three while throwing 106 pitches.

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“When I’m in a game I don’t think about anything. I just think about making my pitches and going after the hitters, I don’t think about trades.”

Randy Myers, also rumored to be on the trading block, pitched the ninth for his 26th save.

Baseball’s non-waiver trading deadline is tonight at midnight (EDT).

Shannon Stewart singled home the game’s only run in the fifth inning against Esteban Loaiza (0-2) after Darrin Fletcher singled and moved took second on a ground out.

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Juan Gonzalez, who had missed the last two games because of a strained hamstring, pinch-hit and grounded out with none out in the ninth with a runner in scoring position. Myers got the next two outs on fly balls.

Kansas City 7, Minnesota 3--Terry Pendleton and Jeff King each had three hits, leading Tim Belcher and the Royals over the Twins at Kansas City, Mo.

The start of the game was delayed by rain for 1 hour, 54 minutes. There was a light drizzle at various points during the game.

Dean Palmer homered and had a run-scoring single, King scored three runs and Pendleton and Johnny Damon both drove in two. Jose Offerman extended his career-best hitting streak to 19 games, getting a double and single.

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Belcher (10-9) gave up four hits in 6 2/3 innings.

Oakland 6, Boston 5--Matt Stairs hit a two-run homer and Kenny Rogers got his 11th victory of the season and 99th of his career as the Athletics defeated the Red Sox at Oakland to end a nine-game losing streak.

Stairs hit his 16th homer in the seventh. Kevin Mitchell and Jason Giambi had two-run singles as the A’s, who had tied their longest losing streak since 1978, scored four runs in the third inning.

Rogers (11-4) gave up five runs and eight hits in 7 2/3 innings. Three of those runs came in the eighth inning and were unearned.

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Billy Taylor got the last two outs for his 22nd save as Oakland snapped Boston’s four-game winning streak.

Rogers is 8-0 in 13 home starts in his first season with the Athletics.

Baltimore 6, Detroit 4--Eric Davis hit two homers, including a tiebreaking two-run shot in the seventh inning, as the Orioles finished a three-game sweep at Detroit.

Jeffrey Hammonds hit a two-run double for the Orioles, who blew an early 4-0 lead before improving their record to 17-3 since the All-Star break.

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Davis’ third multi-homer game of the season extended his hitting streak to 17 games. Since the All-Star break he is batting .423 (36 for 85) with nine homers and 28 RBIs.

Davis hit a solo homer in the first off Justin Thompson, and his home run against hard-throwing rookie Matt Anderson (2-1) broke a 4-4 tie in the seventh.

Pete Smith (1-3) relieved starter Jimmy Key and pitched three innings, yielding one run and two hits. Armando Benitez pitched the ninth for his 15th save.

The Tigers chased Key after a three-run third that included Geronimo Berroa’s RBI triple, a run-scoring double from Luis Gonzalez and an RBI single from Paul Bako. Damion Easley hit a run-scoring single off Smith to tie it at 4 in the fourth.

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