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Minor K's 9, but Rangers' bats struggle in loss

Special to MLB.com

CHICAGO -- Mike Minor put the Rangers in the position to earn a series split with the White Sox on Sunday, but the Texas offense didn't hold up its end of the bargain.

Minor struck out nine hitters over five innings, but he allowed a Welington Castillo solo home run and a Leury Garcia two-run single in a 3-0 loss to the White Sox at Guaranteed Rate Field that saw the Rangers manage just two hits. The shutout loss was the first this season for Texas, which entered Sunday as the only team besides the Yankees to not be shut out this season. The Rangers have now dropped six of their last eight games.

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CHICAGO -- Mike Minor put the Rangers in the position to earn a series split with the White Sox on Sunday, but the Texas offense didn't hold up its end of the bargain.

Minor struck out nine hitters over five innings, but he allowed a Welington Castillo solo home run and a Leury Garcia two-run single in a 3-0 loss to the White Sox at Guaranteed Rate Field that saw the Rangers manage just two hits. The shutout loss was the first this season for Texas, which entered Sunday as the only team besides the Yankees to not be shut out this season. The Rangers have now dropped six of their last eight games.

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"We're a better ballclub than this," manager Jeff Banister said.

While Banister gave some credit to how effective White Sox starter Reynaldo Lopez was, he said his club didn't show a good two-strike approach for much of the day and struggled to get any offensive rhythm going.

"We missed a lot of fastballs," Shin-Soo Choo said.

Video: TEX@CWS: Lopez strikes out Rua after challenge

With Adrian Beltre and Elvis Andrus on the disabled list, the Rangers have a group of youngsters trying to fill in. Although Banister isn't concerned about the morale of his team, he said after Sunday's loss that his young players have to find a way to play through disappointment.

"There are tough days at this level, but however you want to play at this level, you learn to overcome, move through and not let these challenges overwhelm you," Banister said. "... They know how to play the game of baseball. Learning to play at the Major League level is a great challenge."

After Minor departed, the combination of Tony Barnette, Alex Claudio and Chris Martin held the White Sox scoreless, as Rangers pitchers combined to strike out 13 hitters. Despite giving up the home run to Castillo, Minor felt like he pitched well and that just enough White Sox hits found open spaces to fall into, like Garcia's bloop single that drove in two.

Video: TEX@CWS: Martin strikes out Garcia in the 8th

"I made quality pitches all day, I felt like," said Minor, who characterized the three runs he surrendered as unlucky. "... I felt like I pitched well, just not well enough. I couldn't stop them."

MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
Best chance missed: Trailing 1-0, the Rangers wasted a Carlos Perez leadoff double in the third inning against Lopez, who struck out Delino DeShields, got Choo to ground out and struck out Jurickson Profar. Perez's double was the last hit the Rangers produced, as Lopez struck out eight over a career-high eight innings.

The White Sox responded by scoring two runs in the bottom of the third.

"We've got to get to the point where, when we get down in the count, we're tough outs," Banister said. "That's the bottom line."

HE SAID IT
"You learn in this business that you put today behind you when it's done. Today doesn't mean anything based on what tomorrow is." -- Banister, on the Rangers' young players learning to deal with tough losses

UP NEXT
Right-hander Bartolo Colon looks to build off another strong start when he makes his 22nd career appearance against the Yankees on Monday. Colon threw 7 2/3 scoreless innings in Seattle on Wednesday, allowing four hits without a walk while striking out three. The 44-year-old will face Masahiro Tanaka in the series opener, which begins at 7:05 p.m. CT at Globe Life Park.

Jeff Arnold is a contributor to MLB.com based in Chicago.

Texas Rangers, Mike Minor