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ST. LOUIS (AP) — Ian Desmond had a sacrifice fly to cap a two-run ninth-inning rally and the Texas Rangers overcame a late three-run deficit to beat the St. Louis Cardinals 4-3 on Saturday.

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Texas has five straight victories and won its franchise-record ninth consecutive series — the Rangers beat the Cardinals 1-0 on Friday to begin the three-game set. The Cardinals have lost four straight.

The Rangers scored twice in each of the eighth and ninth innings.

In the ninth, closer Trevor Rosenthal (2-2) hit Robinson Chirinos with a pitch to load the bases, and then Kevin Siegrist walked Shin-Soo Choo and allowed Desmond’s fly ball to left.

The Rangers, 44-25, are off to their best start in club history after 69 games. The 2012 and 1996 teams went 42-27.

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Cardinals starter Carlos Martinez pitched seven scoreless innings, allowing four hits and a walk. He struck out four and has a 1.23 ERA over his past four starts.

Jake Diekman got his second save in as many chances. Shawn Tolleson (1-2) pitched a scoreless eighth to get the win.

Texas starter Nick Martinez gave up six hits and three runs in 4 1/3 innings. He is replacing Yu Darvish in the starting rotation while Darvish is on the 15-day disabled list with right shoulder discomfort.

Kolten Wong’s run-scoring single in the fifth pushed the lead to 2-0. Stephen Piscotty followed with a bases-loaded single for a 3-0 lead.

St. Louis infielder Matt Carpenter reached base three times and extended his hitting streak to 11 games with a double in the seventh.

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