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Associated Press

Posted on September 19, 2013 at 3:36 AM

REDS-ASTROS

Bruce leads Reds over Astros 6-5 in 13 innings

HOUSTON (AP) — Jay Bruce's two-run double in the 13th inning helped the Cincinnati Reds to a 6-5 victory over the Houston Astros on Wednesday night.

Rookie base-stealing specialist Billy Hamilton got his first three career hits, had four steals, an RBI and scored the go-ahead run in his first major league start.

Hamilton walked to start the 13th and stole second before Shin-Soo Choo walked. They advanced on a wild pitch before Jorge De Leon intentionally walked Joey Votto with one out.

Bruce's third double of the game bounced off the wall in center field to send Hamilton and Choo home. Bruce had seven hits and 10 RBIs in the series.

Alfredo Simon pitched three scoreless innings for Cincinnati. Aroldis Chapman allowed a hit and a run in the 13th, but struck out Chris Carter to end the 5-hour, 18-minute game for his 37th save.

RANGERS-RAYS

Jennings' RBI single in 12th lifts Rays past Texas

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) — Desmond Jennings had an RBI single in the 12th inning and the Tampa Bay Rays took over the top spot in the AL wild-card race by beating the Texas Rangers 4-3 on Wednesday night.

Texas has a half-game lead over Cleveland, which lost at Kansas City, for the second wild card.

Jose Lobaton opened the 12th with a single off Joseph Ortiz and pinch-runner Sam Fuld went to second on Yunel Escobar's bunt. Fuld then scored on Jennings' hit to right center.

Brandon Gomes struck out Ian Kinsler with runners on second and third with two outs in the top of the 12th for the Rays, who have won two of the first three games of the four-game series.

Texas took a 3-2 lead in the 11th on Adrian Beltre's two-out RBI single. The Rays tied on David DeJesus' RBI single in the bottom of the inning.

PANTHERS-STARS

Stars edge Panthers 3-2 in shootout

DALLAS (AP) — Alex Chiasson and Jamie Benn scored shootout goals to give the Dallas Stars a 3-2 preseason victory over the Florida Panthers on Wednesday.

Dallas backup goalie Christopher Nilstrop stopped both Panthers attempts in the shootout. Chiasson and Benn both had beaten Florida's Jacob Markstrom.

Dallas scored twice in the second period and Florida tied it with two goals in the third.

Florida tied it on goals by Drew Shore and Scottie Upshall 14 seconds apart with less than 4 minutes remaining in the third period, beating Nilstrop. Upshall's goal was his third of the preseason.

Cody Eakin and Benn had scored 30 seconds apart for the Stars at 17:00 and 17:30 of the second period. Dallas outshot the Panthers 30-24.

TEXANS-HOPKINS

Houston rookie Hopkins off to great start

HOUSTON (AP) — The Houston Texans have grown accustomed to watching star receiver Andre Johnson make spectacular grabs.

Just two games into his NFL career, the Texans are already beginning to expect equally dazzling catches from DeAndre Hopkins.

Hopkins reached above a defender to pull in a 3-yard touchdown reception to give Houston a 30-24 overtime win over the Titans.

Johnson was knocked out of that game with a concussion. And with his status uncertain for Sunday's game against Baltimore, the rookie could be needed again.

Quarterback Matt Schaub says he's been impressed with how Hopkins has handled critical situations, and is eager to see how much better he can get.

COWBOYS-INJURIES

Dallas' Bryant, Spencer miss workout, plan to play

IRVING, Texas (AP) — Dallas Cowboys receiver Dez Bryant and defensive Anthony Spencer have missed practiced with injuries but say they will play against St. Louis.

Bryant is battling back spasms that limited him to conditioning work Wednesday. Spencer has soreness in his surgically repaired left knee but said he planned to practice at some point before Sunday's home game against the Rams.

Defensive end DeMarcus Ware was a limited participant with a neck injury sustained late in last weekend's loss at Kansas City.

Quarterback Tony Romo was a full participant. He bruised his ribs in the opener against the Giants and took an injection for pain before facing the Chiefs.

Linebacker Ernie Sims was sidelined again by a groin injury.

COWBOYS-HURTING CLAIBORNE

Cowboys' Claiborne has bum shoulder, wounded pride

IRVING, Texas (AP) — Morris Claiborne laughed when reminded of his Twitter rant a few hours after a pass interference penalty cost the Dallas Cowboys a final chance to come back against Kansas City.

The easy smile seemed to show he had moved on after feeling compelled to tell "the haters out there your opinion doesn't matter so keep it to yourself."

Moving on is what cornerbacks get paid to do. That includes those playing with a bum shoulder, wounded pride and the burden of being a No. 6 overall pick that the Cowboys moved up eight spots to get a year ago.

Claiborne says he "ain't thinking about" the penalty, and coach Jason Garrett isn't worried about him bouncing back Sunday at home against St. Louis.

TEXAS-ASH

QB Ash practices with Longhorns

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — A Texas spokesman says junior quarterback David Ash practiced with the Longhorns on Wednesday after missing last week's game with head and shoulder injuries.

Ash is still being evaluated for Saturday's game against Kansas State. He left in the fourth quarter of Texas' loss to BYU two weeks ago. Because he still had concussion symptoms, Texas kept him away from the stadium last week when the Longhorns lost to Mississippi. Senior Case McCoy started in his place.

Ash has accounted for seven touchdowns in two games, passing for six and running 55 yards for another score.

SEC-TALENTED QBS

Manziel, McCarron headline crop of quality SEC QBs

OXFORD, Miss. (AP) — Texas A&M's Johnny Manziel has the Heisman Trophy. Alabama's A.J. McCarron has the national championships.

Those two are the Southeastern Conference's most famous quarterbacks, but they're just the main headliners — there's a host of talented signal-callers that have offenses rolling across the league

Georgia's Aaron Murray, LSU's Zach Mettenberger, Mississippi's Bo Wallace and South Carolina's Connor Shaw are among the many quarterbacks who have had a good start this season.

Last week's Manziel-McCarron showdown, whose teams combined for 1,196 total yards in the Tide's 49-42 victory, demonstrated what a banner year this has been so far for SEC offenses.

The gaudy stats are popping up everywhere.

Seven SEC teams averaged at least 30 points per game in 2012. So far this season, 10 teams are above that threshold.

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