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National Post Sports

In the pouring rain, Joe Nathan closed out the Rangers’ 7-4 win over the Los Angeles Angels to give Texas its sixth straight win. With the win and the Tampa Bay’s loss to the Toronto Blue Jays, the Rangers are now tied with the Rays for the second wild-card spot and a half game behind the Cleveland Indians, who played later Saturday, heading into the final day of the regular season. (Photos: Sarah Glenn/Getty Images)

So close: Yu Darvish almost pitched a no-hitter on Tuesday night.

Darvish was one out from a perfect game when Marwin Gonzalez grounded a clean single through the pitcher’s legs, and Texas beat the Houston Astros 7-0 on Tuesday night.

A screen shot of the play showed the ball sail what looked to be less than a foot below the pitcher’s glove and into the outfield.

“That was impossible to catch,” Darvish said through a translator. (Photos: Houston Chronicle/Cody Duty/The Associated Press)

This is Yu Darvish wearing a speedo. Luis Martinez had to wear one too. The Rangers rookies were forced to wear a costume as part of rookie hazing as the team heads to the bus after playing the Angels on Sunday. At least they booked a spot in the MLB playoffs?

Head over heels: Los Angeles Angels left fielder Vernon Wells falls over the wall as he tries to catch a two-run home run by Texas Rangers’ Ian Kinsler in the third inning of a baseball game in Anaheim, Calif.

Head over heels: Los Angeles Angels left fielder Vernon Wells falls over the wall as he tries to catch a two-run home run by Texas Rangers’ Ian Kinsler in the third inning of a baseball game in Anaheim, Calif.

No, this is not Tony Romo. Texas Rangers closer Joe Nathan can do a pretty good impersonation of Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo.The pitcher and New York Giants fan had no choice.Nathan paid off a bet with fellow reliever and Cowboys fan Mike Adams by donning a full Romo uniform, including pads and football cleats, during the Rangers’ batting practice before Tuesday night’s game against Cleveland.It was the Rangers’ first home game since the Cowboys’ season-opening 24-17 victory at the Giants last Wednesday.Nathan even threw a few passes to teammates in the outfield before signing autographs for fans while still wearing the No. 9 jersey and helmet with a star.Adams also had a bet with general manager Jon Daniels, who will have to wear a Cowboys cap during a media session.

No, this is not Tony Romo. Texas Rangers closer Joe Nathan can do a pretty good impersonation of Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo.

The pitcher and New York Giants fan had no choice.

Nathan paid off a bet with fellow reliever and Cowboys fan Mike Adams by donning a full Romo uniform, including pads and football cleats, during the Rangers’ batting practice before Tuesday night’s game against Cleveland.

It was the Rangers’ first home game since the Cowboys’ season-opening 24-17 victory at the Giants last Wednesday.

Nathan even threw a few passes to teammates in the outfield before signing autographs for fans while still wearing the No. 9 jersey and helmet with a star.

Adams also had a bet with general manager Jon Daniels, who will have to wear a Cowboys cap during a media session.

One, two, three, four: Josh Hamilton made history last night, hitting four home runs against the Baltimore Orioles.

And he does appreciate how fortunate he was to be playing baseball at Camden Yards on Tuesday night as a member of the Texas Rangers. Because, before his epic performance against the Baltimore Orioles, Hamilton had to do something even harder than launching a quartet of two-run homers.

He needed to save himself from personal ruin.

Hamilton went from first-round draft pick by Tampa Bay in 1999 to out of baseball altogether because of drug and alcohol addiction.
   
He recovered and returned to the majors in 2007 with Cincinnati, and was traded to the Texas, where he has become a star – the AL MVP in 2010 – while still battling his addiction. He had a relapse before this season, but is off to a torrid start.

Pitching, running, sweating, and riding off into the sunset on a golf cart. Yu Darvish: He’s just like us.

(Source: nationalpost.com)

Yu Darvish a big gamble for MLB teamsYu Darvish stands 6-foot-5 and weighs 215 pounds. He throws three different fastballs and three breaking pitches. For five straight seasons, he has logged ERAs below 2.00. His strikeout-to-walk ratio over the last four seasons has been roughly 4.4-1. He breaks a lot of bats.His movie-star countenance graces billboards and commercials across Japan. He has posed nude for a women’s magazine. Currently, Japanese tabloids are revelling in his divorce from his actress wife.Darvish has already become a household name among North American baseball fans, even before they know where — or even if — he will play in the major leagues next season. And among diehard followers of the Toronto Blue Jays, the Yu-buzz has surged in the past few days.The online rumour mill, citing the usual unnamed sources, puts the Jays in the thick of the bidding for the 25-year-old pitcher, by all accounts the best pitching prospect ever to seek his freedom from Japanese professional baseball. (Photo: Jeff Bottari/Getty Images)

Yu Darvish a big gamble for MLB teams
Yu Darvish stands 6-foot-5 and weighs 215 pounds. He throws three different fastballs and three breaking pitches. For five straight seasons, he has logged ERAs below 2.00. His strikeout-to-walk ratio over the last four seasons has been roughly 4.4-1. He breaks a lot of bats.

His movie-star countenance graces billboards and commercials across Japan. He has posed nude for a women’s magazine. Currently, Japanese tabloids are revelling in his divorce from his actress wife.

Darvish has already become a household name among North American baseball fans, even before they know where — or even if — he will play in the major leagues next season. And among diehard followers of the Toronto Blue Jays, the Yu-buzz has surged in the past few days.

The online rumour mill, citing the usual unnamed sources, puts the Jays in the thick of the bidding for the 25-year-old pitcher, by all accounts the best pitching prospect ever to seek his freedom from Japanese professional baseball. (Photo: Jeff Bottari/Getty Images)

So long, TonyLegendary St. Louis Cardinals manager Tony La Russa retired today, just days after winning the World Series. Photo: Richard Carson/Reuters

So long, Tony
Legendary St. Louis Cardinals manager Tony La Russa retired today, just days after winning the World Series. Photo: Richard Carson/Reuters

WORLD SERIES: Chris Carpenter of the St. Louis Cardinals celebrates with family after defeating the Texas Rangers 6-2 to win Game 7 of the World Series at Busch Stadium in St Louis, Missouri.  Photo: Dilip Vishwanat/Getty ImagesRelated: World Series MVP David Freese gets second chance in Cardinals’ victoryRelated: Cardinals win storybook World Series over RangersRelated: Gallery: Cardinals and Rangers battle in Game 7 of World Series

WORLD SERIES: Chris Carpenter of the St. Louis Cardinals celebrates with family after defeating the Texas Rangers 6-2 to win Game 7 of the World Series at Busch Stadium in St Louis, Missouri.  Photo: Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images
Related: World Series MVP David Freese gets second chance in Cardinals’ victory
Related: Cardinals win storybook World Series over Rangers
Related: Gallery: Cardinals and Rangers battle in Game 7 of World Series