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DETROIT (DETROIT FREE PRESS) - Max Scherzer suffered his first loss of the season as the Detroit Tigers fell to the Texas Rangers, 7-1, tonight at Comerica Park.

Scherzer (13-1) wasn't particularly sharp, gave up a season-high eight hits on a season-high 122 pitches in just six innings. He allowed four earned runs and walked two while striking out six.

Nelson Cruz was 4-for-5 with a double, two runs and an RBI. Adrian Beltre was 3-for-5 with a two-run home run.

The Rangers struck three times in the fourth inning. Cruz began the frame with a double and got to third on a groundout. A.J. Pierzynski then made it 1-0 with a sacrifice fly to left. Elvis Andrus walked and Mitch Moreland followed with a home run to left.

Detroit answered with a run in the bottom of the inning, which began with Jhonny Peralta's single. He then stole second base and Matt Tuiasosopo walked. Brayan Pena grounded into a double play, but rookie Hernan Perez came through with a run-scoring single to center, his first major-league RBI.

But the Rangers got that run back in the fifth. Leonys Martin drew a leadoff walk, stole second base and got to third on Pena's errant throw. Then with two outs, Pierzynski blooped one just fair along the leftfield line for an RBI double.

Al Alburquerque gave up three earned runs in the ninth. Ian Kinsler drew a one-out walk and stole second base with two away. Cruz then hit an infield single that Perez misplayed, allowing Kinsler to score and Beltre hit a two-run homer to right.

Rangers starter Derek Holland improved to 8-5 after going allowing an earned run on five hits and five walks in seven innings while striking out seven.

The Tigers had a chance to take the lead when they loaded the bases with two out in the third, but Holland struck out Victor Martinez.

Luke Putkonen relieved Scherzer in the seventh and after recording an out, gave up consecutive singles to Martin and Cruz. Phil Coke then came in and got Pierzynski to ground into a 6-3 inning-ending double play.

With two outs in the seventh, Austin Jackson drew a walk but Torii Hunter's bunt attempt was fielded by Holland for the final out.

In the eighth, Prince Fielder hit a one-out bloop single off of Joakim Soria, but Victor Martinez flied out to left and Peralta struck out.

Hunter was the lone Tiger with two hits.

BY KIRKLAND CRAWFORD/DFP

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