Yu Darvish matched his major-league high with 11 strikeouts over eight innings after an extended break and the AL West-leading Texas Rangers beat the Houston Astros 6-2 on Friday night.
David Murphy lined a two-run single in a five-run fifth off Jordan Lyles (1-3), when the Rangers had two popups fall for hits after an error and a hit batsman started the rally.
Darvish (8-4) scattered seven hits and gave up two runs while throwing 76 of his 110 pitches for strikes. He had two walks.
After Jordan Schafer's infield single to start the sixth, Darvish struck out eight of the last 11 batters he faced - including the side in the eighth against the heart of the Astros order.