ARLINGTON -- Nicky Delmonico's second home run of the night -- this one an inside-the-park shot -- in the eighth inning lifted the White Sox to a 4-3 victory over the Rangers on Friday night. The loss dropped the Rangers to 1 1/2 games behind the Angels for the second
ARLINGTON -- Nicky Delmonico's second home run of the night -- this one an inside-the-park shot -- in the eighth inning lifted the White Sox to a 4-3 victory over the Rangers on Friday night. The loss dropped the Rangers to 1 1/2 games behind the Angels for the second American League Wild Card spot.
The score was 3-3 when Delmonico led off the eighth against reliever Ricardo Rodriguez with a drive to deep right field. Nomar Mazara went back to the wall trying to make a leaping catch and the ball sailed just beyond his glove. The ball hit the top of the wall and Mazara hit it harder. The ball caromed hard, but Mazara landed on his left knee and fell to the ground. By the time second baseman Rougned Odor ran it down, Delmonico was steaming his way around third for an inside-the-parker. Mazara remained in the game.
"Maybe rounding third base," said Delmonico of when he felt the inside-the-park home run could actually happen. "I felt like I ran out of gas right before, but luckily I was able to score."
White Sox right-hander Gregory Infante picked up his first Major League win with 1 2/3 scoreless innings in relief. Starter James Shields went 5 1/3 innings, allowing only a two-run home run to Mike Napoli in the fourth. Delmonico put the White Sox ahead, 3-2, with a two-run home run in the sixth.
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The Rangers tied it in the seventh when Delino DeShields grounded out against Infante with runners at second and third and one out. Infante then struck out Shin-Soo Choo to end the inning, stranding Robinson Chirinos at third. The Rangers were 0-for-7 with runners in scoring position.
"More than anything else, what we have been doing while winning was capitalizing on our opportunities," manager Jeff Banister said. "Tonight we had a number of opportunities and couldn't push anything across except the home run."
Rookie right-hander Juan Minaya pitched out of trouble in the ninth to earn his first Major League save. Joey Gallo started the Rangers' ninth with a leadoff walk and moved up to second on Napoli's hit-and-run grounder to third on a full-count pitch. Minaya retired Odor on a popup and struck out Chirinos to end the game.
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
Rangers hitless with RISP: The Rangers were hitless in seven at-bats with runners in scoring position, and their troubles started right away. DeShields led off the first with a double and moved to third on Choo's sacrifice bunt. Elvis Andrus followed with a grounder to third baseman Yolmer Sanchez and DeShields was thrown out in a rundown after breaking for the plate. DeShields stayed alive long enough for Andrus to get to second. Adrian Beltre then lined out to right field to end the inning.
"It was a good game. Just in general, a good game across the board," White Sox manager Rick Renteria said. "I thought Shieldsy did a nice job of getting through that ballgame with minimal damage. Infante and Minaya did a nice job. Obviously we got some timely hitting today."
Delmonico shot, DeShields catch: Delmonico's homer in the sixth off Andrew Cashner was his fourth in 15 games. The White Sox later loaded the bases with two outs and Adam Engel at the plate. The Rangers brought in Tony Barnette, and Engel lofted a fly ball into shallow center field. DeShields came racing in and made a sliding catch for the third out.
"I thought it was a good pitch. I took a little bit off to try and sink it a bit more. I should've gone in. He dove and put a good swing on it." -- Cashner, on Delmonico's first home run
ABREU OUT AFTER REVIEW
Jose Abreu was on first base with one out in the third when Delmonico flied out to Gallo in deep left. Abreu tagged up and went to second, sliding in safely, well ahead of the throw. But the Rangers challenged the call, claiming Abreu came off the bag for a split-second while Odor was applying the tag. They won the challenge; the call was overturned, and Abreu was ruled out to end the inning.
White Sox: Left-hander Derek Holland pitches against his former team when he faces the Rangers at 7:05 p.m. CT on Saturday at Globe Life Park. Holland is 1-6 with an 8.68 ERA in his last 10 starts, including a loss to the Rangers in Chicago.
Rangers: Left-hander Martin Perez gets the start against the White Sox on Saturday. Perez has won his last two starts, allowing three runs in 14 innings. He is 2-1 with a 3.74 ERA in three career starts against the White Sox.
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T.R. Sullivan has covered the Rangers since 1989, and for MLB.com since 2006. Follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger and listen to his podcast.
Scott Merkin has covered the White Sox for MLB.com since 2003. Read his blog, Merk's Works, follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin, on Facebook and listen to his podcast.