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Strasburg strike out 10 to lead Nationals

Before the first pitch was thrown, Stephen Strasburg saw home plate umpire Jeff Nelson walk toward the mound and began preparing for a pine tar search.

"I thought he was going to check my glove," Strasburg said.

As it turned out, the ump only wanted to see the ball, which had bounced in the dirt on the throw to second following Strasburg's final warm-up toss. The Washington Nationals' ace was free to work his usual magic, which Wednesday night consisted of 10 strikeouts in seven innings against the Tampa Bay Rays in a 3-2 win that stopped a four-game losing streak.

"We kind of had a laugh on the bench," Nationals manager Davey Johnson said. "When the umpire came out, he wanted to look at the ball. Stras was getting ready to undress . . . He was ready to take everything off and have them search him."

Strasburg (9-1) prevailed in a fast-ballers' duel with newbie Chris Archer (0-1) to win his sixth consecutive start, allowing five hits and two runs.

Brewers 8, Blue Jays 3: Yovani Gallardo (6-5) pitched into the seventh inning and Ryan Braun hit one of host Milwaukee's four homers. The Brewers took two out of three against Toronto.

Braun extended his hitting streak to 15 games with a double in the third, then hit his 20th homer in the seventh.

Red Sox 15, Marlins 5: David Ortiz hit a grand slam for one of the Red Sox's four homers as host Boston set a season high in runs. Mike Aviles, Jarrod Saltalamacchia and Will Middlebrooks also homered.

Phillies 7, Rockies 6: Todd Helton missed tagging first base to allow the winning run to score on Placido Polanco's grounder in the ninth inning as host Philadelphia rallied.

Indians 8, Reds 1: Justin Masterson (4-6) pitched a three-hitter for his first complete game this season as host AL Central-leading Cleveland capped a three-game sweep.

Asdrubal Cabrera hit a three-run homer and Johnny Damon hit a two-run shot in the fifth inning off Bronson Arroyo (3-5).

Cardinals 3, Tigers 1: Jake Westbrook (6-6) pitched his first complete game in more than two years, giving up only an unearned run for visiting St. Louis.

Rangers 4, Padres 2: Yu Darvish (9-4) settled down to hold San Diego to five hits in eight innings and got his first major league hit to help visiting Texas to its sixth straight win.

Diamondbacks 14, Mariners 10: Ryan Roberts hit an inside-the-park home run, one of six that tied a club record for host Arizona, which took two of three from Seattle. -- AP

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