Washington, DC (SportsNetwork.com) - Yu Darvish fanned 12 in eight scoreless innings to guide the Texas Rangers to a 2-0 win over Washington in the finale of a three-game set from Nationals Park.
Darvish (5-2) continued his road dominance, improving to 4-0 away from home this season. He yielded just five hits and two walks before handing the ball to Joakim Soria, who got through the ninth in just 10 pitches to secure the shutout.
Darvish has struck out at least 11 batters in three of his last four starts.
"He was definitely on his 'A' game today," Rangers first baseman Donnie Murphy said of Darvish. "It looked like those guys were missing balls by a foot."
Leonys Martin broke a 0-0 tie in the top of the seventh inning with a solo home run off Tanner Roark (3-4) which proved to be the game-winner. Roark tossed seven strong innings for the Nats, allowing just the one run on seven hits.
Murphy went 3-for-4 while Elvis Andrus and Alex Rios had two hits apiece for Texas.
Washington took the first two games of this series by a combined score of 19-4.
The Rangers nearly opened the scoring in the bottom of the first inning, but a lengthy umpire review kept the game scoreless. With runners on the corners, two outs and Murphy at the dish, Rios broke for second and appeared to have the base stolen. Meanwhile, Andrus took off for home and crossed home plate without a throw. Rios beat the throw into second but popped up off the bag, drawing a tag from second baseman Danny Espinosa.
The umpires determined that Rios was tagged out before Andrus scored, negating the run.
Martin eventually broke the draw, lining a 0-1 Roark offering into Washington's dugout in right field.
"It was just a bad chanegup...a bad pitch," Roark admitted. "Bad pitches up get hit hard...and it cost us."
Drew Storen relieved Roark to start the eighth and served up a leadoff single to Dan Robertson. Andrus moved Robertson into scoring position with a sacrifice bunt and Murphy padded the cushion with an RBI single to center.
Darvish left after eight innings having thrown just 102 pitches, but Soria was up to the task in the ninth. Wilson Ramos grounded out before Ian Desmond and Nate McLouth both went down swinging as Soria racked up his 11th save of the season.