ARLINGTON -- It wasn't his sharpest outing of the season, but Rangers right-hander Bartolo Colon did just enough to earn a piece of history on Saturday night against the White Sox.Colon limited the damage over five-plus innings, and the Rangers produced a seven-run eighth inning to earn a 13-4 blowout
ARLINGTON -- It wasn't his sharpest outing of the season, but Rangers right-hander Bartolo Colon did just enough to earn a piece of history on Saturday night against the White Sox.
Colon limited the damage over five-plus innings, and the Rangers produced a seven-run eighth inning to earn a 13-4 blowout win at Globe Life Park. The big inning was highlighted by Elvis Andrus' two-run triple to center and Jurickson Profar's RBI double to right. Nomar Mazara also added an RBI single.
"It goes back to what they want to do, what type of hitters do they want to be," manager Jeff Banister said. "Being able to take that professional at-bat, see some pitches, get your rhythm and timing ready for the night, and have the ability to shrink the zone for yourself and be ready to drive a baseball when you get a pitch to hit."
The Rangers' strong offensive showing backed Colon, who earned the 245th victory of his career, matching Dennis Martinez for the most wins by a Latin American pitcher.
"I'm very happy and honored to tie Dennis Martinez, but the team helped me a lot too," Colon said through a team translator.
The 45-year-old righty had to pitch his way out of jams during the early stages of his start. He held the White Sox scoreless in the first inning after allowing the first two batters to reach, and he allowed just two runs to score in a 42-pitch second inning.
"It was [Chicago], you have to give credit to them," Colon said. "I was having a little problem getting control of my pitches, but I was trying to do my best."
Despite Colon's shaky second inning, Banister said he wanted to give Colon an opportunity to secure a win.
"Just the history, Bartolo, kinda how he's pitched previously," Banister said. "Obviously, we want to win every game we possibly can, but in situations like this, for him, and the overall history, and his impact on the game, and impact on himself, and just what it means for the game of baseball."
Colon rewarded Banister's decision to leave him in by retiring nine of the next 10 batters he faced after the second. Colon said he made an adjustment after pitching coach Doug Brocail told him he was taking too long to get his hand out of his glove to pitch.
"I have to give credit to my pitching coach, because he told me after the second inning what I was doing wrong," Colon said. "He showed me the video, and that's when I started working."
With the win, the Rangers earned their fifth straight series victory.
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
With the Rangers trailing by one run in the fourth, Robinson Chirinos put the Rangers ahead with a bases-clearing double down the right-field line to score Mazara, Rougned Odor and Profar. Chirinos has produced an extra-base hit in a career-high six consecutive games, which is the longest streak by a Ranger this season.
"He works on his craft endlessly," Banister said. "In the video room, mentally preparing himself for these pitchers. To do that work, you don't see that all the time from a catcher."
The Rangers scored seven runs in an inning for the second straight night. Prior to opening a three-game set with the White Sox this weekend, the Rangers hadn't scored more than six runs in an inning.
HE SAID IT
"Tying Dennis Martinez, it's such an accomplishment. It takes him a long time, 45 years, but it's nice that he was able to get that, and hopefully he can break it in his next start," -- Adrian Beltre, on Colon tying Martinez's record
Left-hander Cole Hamels starts the series finale against the White Sox at 2:05 p.m. CT on Sunday at Globe Life Park. Hamels is 3-2 with a 3.28 ERA in his last nine starts, and he's 2-0 with a 2.86 ERA in four career starts against the White Sox. Right-hander Reynaldo Lopez (3-5, 3.73 ERA) will start for Chicago.
Wesley Dotson is a reporter for MLB.com based in Texas.