ARLINGTON -- As good as the Texas Rangers' offense has been in 2011, especially since July 1, their hitters continue to heap praise upon a rotation that has become the focal point of the club's doubters.
But it's hard to argue with Matt Harrison, who started Tuesday.
"The offense definitely won the game for us tonight," the left-hander said.
And, as of Tuesday afternoon, the lineup has a chance to get better with Nelson Cruz activated from the disabled list for limited duty. His replacement, though, is doing just fine.
In fact, David Murphy is leading the offense during its torrid September.
Murphy went 4 for 4 with two solo homers, and Josh Hamilton added a two-run shot as the Rangers pulled away from Cleveland for a 10-4 victory.
The Rangers have scored 38 runs in the first four games of this homestand, winning three times. The victory ensured that the Rangers' lead in the American League West today would be no worse than three games.
"That's what it's going to take up and down the lineup," manager Ron Washington said. "Everybody's doing their job."
A 14-hit effort backed Harrison, who lasted only five innings but got enough support to win for a 12th time this season.
He allowed three runs, and the Rangers led 4-3 after 5 1/3 innings thanks to Murphy's homers in the second and fourth and Hamilton's in the fifth.
Murphy settled for an infield single off Justin Masterson to start the sixth inning. But the 70-foot dribbler was the start of a four-run rally.
Craig Gentry brought in the first two with a pinch-hit single, and Elvis Andrus delivered two more with a double off the wall in right-center field.
Andrus has hit safely in all 21 career games against Cleveland.
Adrian Beltre started the seventh with a solo homer, giving him a 17-game hitting streak. Murphy followed with a double and scored on a single by Mike Napoli.
"Our offense is really starting to pick up here in the second half," said Harrison, who breezed through the first inning before losing his command and throwing 94 pitches.
"You can't say enough about what they're doing, swinging the bats and getting their pitch. It's really fun to watch."
Said Murphy: "That's why it's a team effort. Sometimes they pick us up, and sometimes we pick them up. Harry did a good job. He kept us in the game, and that's all we need."
The Rangers are hitting .299 since July 1, the best in the major leagues. That number jumps to .333, along with 19 homers, over the past 10 games. They've had at least 10 hits in nine of those games.
Murphy has been at the forefront. He shook out of a homestand funk Tuesday and pushed his numbers the past 16 games to a .424 average with six homers and 20 RBIs.
Washington reiterated afterward that Murphy will continue to play when Cruz is cleared to return for full-time duty.
"How am I going to pull him out of the lineup?" Washington said. "I'm just happy David is putting it together. We've been needing him. He's aggressive. He continued to work. He didn't drop his head because things weren't going well. That just shows the professional that David Murphy is."