Texas Rangers (51-79) at Seattle Mariners (71-59), 10:10 p.m. (ET)

08/25/2014 10:55 AM

08/26/2014 10:36 AM

(SportsNetwork.com) - James Paxton aims to bounce back from the first loss of his career and keep Seattle in possession of an American League wild card spot on Tuesday night when the Mariners host the Texas Rangers in the second of three straight meetings.

Paxton had won the first six decisions of his career over nine starts, including three wins in five outings this season, before suffering a 4-3 setback to Philadelphia on Wednesday.

The 25-year-old lefty lasted just four innings and was charged with four runs. And while only one of those were earned, Paxton himself had a throwing error in the fourth frame that helped set up a big inning for the Phillies.

Paxton is 3-1 with a 2.20 earned run average this year and will face the Rangers for the first time.

Seattle carried a half-game lead over the idle Detroit Tigers for the second wild card spot in the AL into Monday's opener and failed to extend that edge with a 2-0 loss.

Roenis Elias allowed just one run on three hits with four walks and six strikeouts over five innings to take the loss for the Mariners, who were coming off a three-game sweep of Boston, while Logan Morrison had two of his club's four hits.

Seattle had plated 20 runs in its sweep of the Red Sox.

"This is baseball and if you don't get hits you're not going to win," said Seattle manager Lloyd McClendon. "Tonight Texas played a better ball game then we did and that's why they won the game."

The Rangers got eight strong frames of three-hit ball on Monday by Miles Mikolas, who struck out five to win for the first time in six starts.

"He was very good, executed all his pitches and stayed focused," said Texas manager Ron Washington about Mikolas. "He was right where he wanted to be and used all his pitches extremely well."

J.P. Arencibia and Rougned Odor drove in a run each as Texas has won back-to- back games for the first time since Aug. 5-6. They haven't won three in a row since June 11-14.

Hoping to stretch that win streak tonight will be right-hander Nick Martinez, who has picked up a victory in two of his past three starts following a seven- decision slide. He is coming off a 5-4 win at Miami on Wednesday, yielding two runs on six hits and two walks over six innings. He also struck out seven.

Martinez is 3-9 with a 5.13 ERA on the year and that includes a loss to Seattle on June 15 in is first ever meeting with the club. The 24-year-old was charged with two runs on nine hits and a walk in six innings.

The Rangers have won eight of 13 versus the Mariners this year.

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