Yu Darvish allowed two singles over 6 1-3 scoreless innings in his first start in 16 days, combining with three relievers on a three-hitter as the Texas Rangers beat the New Yankees 3-0 Monday night.
Darvish (9-4), who last pitched July 6 before going on the disabled list with a right trapezius strain, struck out four and walked two. He left after allowing consecutive batters to reach in the seventh, having thrown 60 of 90 pitches for strikes.
Just before the game, the Rangers announced they had acquired right-hander Matt Garza from the Chicago Cubs. Garza, who had been scheduled to start for Chicago at Arizona on Monday night, likely will make his Texas debut Wednesday night against the Yankees.
Ivan Nova (4-3) struck out four while throwing a season-high 112 pitches over seven innings.
All-Star closer Joe Nathan pitched the ninth for his 31st save in 32 chances to cap the Rangers’ eighth shutout of the season.
The Yankees, coming off an 11-inning loss late Sunday night at Boston, were held scoreless for the eighth time.
Texas had reliever Robbie Ross warming up while the Rangers were batting in the sixth. But Darvish came out to start the seventh, and appeared frustrated when manager Ron Washington came out of the dugout to make the pitching change.
Ross then got Travis Hafner, the only batter he faced, to ground into an inning-ending double play. Tanner Scheppers worked a perfect eighth.
Nelson Cruz homered for the Rangers, who had lost seven of eight games. They were swept at home in a three-game series by Baltimore over the weekend after the All-Star break.
Cruz’s 23rd homer was a 412-foot solo shot in the seventh that landed in the Yankees’ bullpen in left-center field and made it 3-0.
The Rangers led for good after Ian Kinsler drew a leadoff walk in the first, stole second base and scored on Adrian Beltre’s single — the first run they’ve scored in the first inning in 11 games. In the sixth, Elvis Andrus had a walk and a stolen base before Geovany Soto doubled.
New York didn’t have a hit until Lyle Overbay led off the fifth with a bloop single into short left field out of the reach of third baseman Adrian Beltre. The Yankees didn’t have another hit until Overbay lined a single to right in the seventh, just before Vernon Wells walked and Darvish came out of the game.
Darvish only missed one start for Texas, but was unable to pitch in the All-Star game even though he did go to New York last week.
Texas sent rookie right-hander Justin Grimm, top prospect third baseman Mike Olt and Class-A pitcher C.J. Edwards to the Cubs. There will also be at least one player to be named later, possibly two, depending on who is chosen by Chicago.
NOTES: The Rangers’ bullpen has pitched 22 1-3 consecutive scoreless innings. ... Yankees OF Curtis Granderson, expected back early next month from a broken pinkie, got three at-bats in his first simulated game in Tampa and continued running the bases. Granderson said he feels like it’s “at the spring training point again” where preseason games are just a few days away. His status will be evaluated after simulated games Tuesday and Wednesday. ... C Francisco Cervelli, sidelined by right wrist and elbow injuries, did on-field defensive drills and expects to soon start taking batting practice in an indoor cage in Tampa, while INF Jayson Nix (strained right hamstring) got six at-bats in his latest simulated game, but did not run the bases.