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TEX@BOS: Darvish fans nine Red Sox in Rangers' loss

Though he brushed off the idea that his new haircut might lead to a change in fortunes, Rangers right-hander Yu Darvish will still be looking for a return to form in Sunday's series finale against the Tigers. Detroit's Rick Porcello, meanwhile, will be looking to reverse his overall fortunes against Texas.

After a solid enough start to the season, Darvish has found the going tougher as the weather has gotten warmer. Since July, the Japan native is 1-4 with a 7.04 ERA in six starts.

That's not the pitcher the Rangers thought they were getting when they broke the bank last offseason to sign him, and it's not the type of struggles that Darvish ever experienced pitching in the Japanese leagues.

As he hopes to avoid losing three straight decisions for the first time in the Majors with Sunday's start, Darvish said he wants to once again become the pitcher he was when playing in his home country.

"That's something that I want to do," Darvish said. "It's going to be a slow process. I don't know if I'm going to get the results right away or even in the next outing. But I'm moving that way."

While his counterpart Porcello pitched solidly in his last outing against the Yankees, holding New York to three runs in 6 2/3 innings on Tuesday, he'll have to buck the trend of his rough performances against the Rangers.

In four career starts against Texas, Porcello is 2-2 with an 8.47 ERA. The good news is he was much improved in his last outing against the Rangers, holding them to one run in six innings on June 25.

"I was trying to keep the mindset that it was a 0-0 game," Porcello said after that start. "For me, if I start thinking otherwise, start thinking that I have a cushion to work with, you tend to get complacent, maybe not be as aggressive in the strike zone, execute the pitches that I need to execute. I've fallen into that trap before."

Should he be able to maintain that mindset in Sunday's rubber match, it could lead to a series win for the Tigers.

Tigers: Dotel enjoying bigger role
Reliever Octavio Dotel pitched two innings in Friday's game to help preserve the Tigers' win in the series opener, and performances like that are leading manager Jim Leyland to possibly consider pitching Dotel in similar situations more often.

"I think the best thing about him is he's got no fear," Leyland said. "If they hit it, they hit it, and he turns the page real good. He's a neat guy, but I think people don't realize how good of an arm he's got yet. He's got a good arm."

Rangers: Napoli lands on DL
A strained left quadriceps has forced catcher Mike Napoli to the 15-day disabled list. The injury could be partially to blame to Napoli's recent struggles, as he's gone hitless in his last 14 at-bats with eight strikeouts. Luis Martinez was called up from Triple-A Round Rock to replace him.

• Second baseman Michael Young has been hot in August. He had hits in all nine games this month before Saturday, contributing to a 10-game hitting streak overall.

"We're about to find out if he's locked in," Rangers manager Ron Washington said. "If he can stay locked in, he can get on a good run. He's getting around on the ball and starting to smoke it."

Worth noting
• Rangers left-hander Matt Harrison will be able to make his next start on Tuesday after recovering from a stomach virus.

• Former Rangers and Tigers catcher Ivan Rodriguez was back in Arlington on Saturday for ceremonies honoring Texas' All-Time 40th Anniversary All-Time Team.

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