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NYY@MIA: Hughes hurls four shutout frames in relief

The Yankees will try to re-assert themselves on two fronts Wednesday, sending a message to Texas and to the American League East. The Rangers shut out the Yankees in Tuesday's middle act of a three-game set, a 2-0 loss that dropped New York into a four-way tie for first place in its division.

The Rangers, by contrast, are off to the best start (14-4) in franchise history and are tied for the best 18-game start of any AL team since 2000. Texas owns the biggest division lead in baseball (5 1/2 games) and will send Scott Feldman to the mound on Wednesday for a spot start.

Texas was rained out on Friday and staggered by a doubleheader on Saturday, which threw Matt Harrison off turn for Wednesday's series finale. Feldman, a 17-game winner in 2009, steps into the breach hoping to re-establish himself from a knee injury that has hindered him for two seasons.

"Hopefully, he can get us through four or five innings, and then we can get something out of the bullpen," said Rangers manager Ron Washington. "If things don't go astray [Tuesday], everybody will be available. We've just got to get it done. I'm hoping he can take the ball and stay out there awhile."

Things didn't go astray. Yu Darvish was masterful on Tuesday, sending the Yankees to their first loss in five games. The Texas bullpen threw a grand total of one pitch to get a game-ending double play in support of Darvish, and the Yankees notched seven hits, but five of them were singles.

Phil Hughes will get the ball for New York on Wednesday, and he'll be coming off his first victory of the season. The right-hander allowed six runs (two earned) in that game, though, and has been hit hard this season. Hughes said Tuesday that it's important to get ahead and stay ahead on Wednesday.

"It kind of sets the tone," Hughes said. "You never want to be down early. It's tough. You especially don't want to be down by more than one or two. ... Set the tone early, get some quick outs and give our offense a chance to score some runs, and it can really set the tone for the rest of the game."

Yankees: No slowing Jeter
Derek Jeter leads the Majors with 32 hits and will go into Wednesday's game with a league-best 14-game hitting streak. New York's leadoff man has gone for 30 hits in the opening month eight times in his career, but he's never had more than 35. Jeter has gone hitless in just one game this season.

Jeter has 10 multihit games this season, the most of any player in the AL, and he's driven in at least one run in 10 of his 17 games. Last year, Jeter hit .256 in April and .270 before the All-Star break, but he rebounded in part due to a torrid .387 mark in August.

Rangers: Young hits a bump
One night after his nine-game hitting streak ended, Michael Young again went hitless, going 0-for-3 on Tuesday. Young, a career .304 hitter, is in a tie with longtime Ranger Ivan Rodriguez for the second-best batting average in team history for a player with at least 3,000 plate appearances, behind Rusty Greer (.305). Young had hit .526 (20-for-38) over the life of his streak.

Worth noting
• Feldman, who has pitched twice in relief this season, was 1-1 with a 3.27 ERA in two spot starts last year.

• Ian Kinsler led off the bottom of the first inning on Tuesday with a home run, extending his own team record (21) in that category.

• The Yankees have homered in eight of their last nine games and 12 of their last 14.

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