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Alex Avila drove in the winning run as the Detroit Tigers stretched their lead in the American League Central with a 5-4 win over Kansas.
Detroit's Doug Fister struck out 10 batters, including an AL-record nine in a row at one point.
But he came away with a no-decision as, after seven shut-out innings, he surrendered three runs, two earned, in the eighth, then the Royals squared it at 4-4 courtesy of Billy Butler's solo shot off Joaquin Benoit in the top of the ninth.
Avila's ninth-inning RBI meant the Tigers extended their lead over the White Sox, who lost 3-2 to the Tampa Bay Rays.
A solo home run from Evan Longoria in the ninth proved the winning run as the Rays moved to within two games of second place in the wild-card race with their eighth straight win.
Ian Kinsler and Mike Napoli both homered in a five-run first inning as the Texas Rangers beat the Oakland Athletics 9-7.
It took the Rangers' lead over the A's back to four at the top of the AL West.
The AL East-leading New York Yankees were shut down by Brandon Morrow, who hurled seven shut-out innings in the Toronto Blue Jays' 6-0 win.
The Yankees saw their lead trimmed to one over the inactive Baltimore Orioles.
RA Dickey struck out 13 on his way to becoming only the second pitcher this season to reach 20 wins as the New York Mets beat the Pittsburgh Pirates 6-5.
Meanwhile, the first man to reach that landmark this season, Gio Gonzalez, took his total to a league-leading 21 in the Washington Nationals' 7-3 victory over the Philadelphia Phillies.
Michael Morse homered twice for the Nationals.
John Jaso homered and drove in three as the Seattle Mariners beat the Los Angeles Angels 9-4 to dent their play-off push.
Dan Uggla had three RBI as the Atlanta Braves rallied for a 6-2 win over the Miami Marlins, completing a sweep and stretching their winning run to five.
Dioner Navarro hit a walk-off triple to give the Cincinnati Reds a 2-1 win over the Milwaukee Brewers, the Colorado Rockies beat the Chicago Cubs 7-5 and the Los Angeles Dodgers eased to an 8-4 victory over the San Diego Padres.
Meanwhile, the Cleveland Indians, who did not play, dismissed manager Manny Acta, with bench coach Sandy Alomar Jr taking over on an interim basis.