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Young leads Rangers past A's, 6-4

OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) - Michael Young hit his 18th homer of the season, Tommy Hunter pitched seven solid innings and the Texas Rangers beat the Oakland Athletics 6-4 on Thursday.

Hank Blalock added his 21st homer, and David Murphy and Andrew Jones each drove in a run for the Rangers, who remained 4 1/2 games behind the Los Angeles Angels in the AL West while avoiding their first 4-game series sweep since April 18-21, 2008, at Boston.

Hunter (4-2) gave up three runs - two earned - and three hits with a pair of walks.

Nomar Garciaparra, Rajai Davis and Scott Hairston each hit RBI doubles for the Athletics, who managed a run off C.J. Wilson in the ninth before he finished for his 14th save.

Cowboys hoping less of Spears means more big plays

SAN ANTONIO (AP) - Cowboys defensive end Marcus Spears dropped so much weight before training camp that he came in two pounds less than expected.

Spears arrived at 307 pounds, down from his peak of 335. He's now quicker and already drawing raves from coach Wade Phillips and teammates.

Spears slimmed down by working out and watching what he eats. He hired a chef and a nutritionist, and now follows simple rules like drinking lots of water, avoiding late-night snack binges and skipping his favorite meal - his uncle's fried catfish.

Spears is in the fifth and final year of his rookie contract. He would love to remain with the Cowboys, but they're taking a wait & see approach before offering an extension.

FC Dallas beats Dynamo 1-0

FRISCO, Texas (AP) - Jeff Cunningham scored in the 20th minute to help FC Dallas beat the Houston Dynamo 1-0 on Thursday night.

Cunningham beat Houston's Geoff Cameron to a loose ball and dribbled past two defenders before firing a shot from outside of the penalty arc and into the right corner of the net. It was Cunningham's 113th MLS goal, leaving him one behind Chivas USA's Ante Razov for second place on the career list.

Dallas (6-9-5) won consecutive games for the first time this season, while Houston (10-6-5) missed an opportunity to extend its 6-point lead atop the Western Conference.

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