The Texas Rangers have been racking up the runs recently but will be looking to bounce back from a disappointing defeat when they host the Chicago White on Saturday in the third contest of a four-game series. The Rangers dropped a 4-3 decision to the White Sox on Friday after scoring 37 runs while winning their previous four games.
Texas’ setback was just its second in the past nine games and the club sits 1 1/2 games behind Minnesota and the Los Angeles Angels in the battle for the American League’s second wild card. The Rangers managed just six hits in Friday’s defeat - one being first baseman Mike Napoli’s two-run homer. Rookie Nicky Delmonico continued his hot hitting with two homers - including a tiebreaking inside-the-park homer in the eighth inning - to help Chicago end a five-game losing streak. White Sox starter Derek Holland faces his former squad for the second time and it didn’t go well the first occasion on July 1 when he gave up five runs and five hits over 5 1/3 innings while suffering the loss.
TV: 8:05 p.m. ET, WGN (Chicago), FSN Southwest (Texas)
PITCHING MATCHUP: White Sox LH Derek Holland (6-12, 5.68 ERA) vs. Rangers LH Martin Perez (7-10, 5.08)
Holland was pounded by Kansas City on Sunday when he gave up seven runs and seven hits in a season-low (for a start) two innings. The 31-year-old was solid over the season’s first two months but is just 2-8 with a horrific 9.05 ERA in 14 appearances (13 starts) over the past 2 1/2 months. Holland is 3-5 with a 6.23 ERA in 12 road appearances (11 starts) this season.
Perez has posted back-to-back victories after losing his previous four starts. The 26-year-old allowed three runs and nine hits in 14 innings in the two victories after being rocked for 23 runs and 32 hits in 22 innings during his slump. Perez is 2-1 with a 3.74 ERA in three career starts against the White Sox.
1. White Sox 1B Jose Abreu had two hits in each of the first two games of the series and is 13-for-30 with four homers and seven RBIs during a seven-game hitting streak.
2. Texas 1B Joey Gallo is 0-for-6 with four strikeouts in the series after homering in each of his previous three games.
3. Chicago RF Avisail Garcia (wrist) has missed the first two games of the series but hopes to play Saturday.
PREDICTION: Rangers 8, White Sox 4