CHICAGO -- The 5-4 White Sox victory over the Rays Saturday night at Guaranteed Rate Field shaped up as a battle of talented young starters with Tampa Bay's Chris Archer against Carlos Rodon getting the start for the White Sox.But neither pitcher factored in the White Sox ending their four-game
CHICAGO -- The 5-4 White Sox victory over the Rays Saturday night at Guaranteed Rate Field shaped up as a battle of talented young starters with Tampa Bay's Chris Archer against Carlos Rodon getting the start for the White Sox.
But neither pitcher factored in the White Sox ending their four-game losing streak. The Rays fell back under .500 at 68-69 and four games behind the Twins in the race for the second American League Wild Card spot.
Tampa Bay loaded the bases with nobody out in the ninth against Juan Minaya trailing by two runs, but Evan Longoria hit into a double play, and Logan Morrison, who hit his sixth homer in as many games in the sixth, struck out with Longoria on second.
"Frustrating loss," Rays manager Kevin Cash said. "Seemed like we had a bunch of opportunities in the seventh, eighth and ninth to get some runs in, and we just weren't able to get that one big swing. Seventh and ninth, we had the right guys up. Just didn't happen tonight."
Archer lasted eight pitches before he was removed as a precaution due to right lateral forearm tightness. Alen Hanson and Yolmer Sanchez were two of the three hitters Archer faced, and both went deep.
"I thought after I warmed up in the game it would just be gone, but it didn't, and every time I tried to get to full extension I just couldn't get there. It just felt like it was smarter to not risk any further injury trying to force myself through some tightness in my arm."
Those first-inning homers marked just the third time in franchise history the White Sox opened a game with back-to-back homers. The other two were Ray Durham and Jose Valentin on July 4, 2000, and Boze Berger and Mike Kreevich on Sept. 2, 1937.
"I didn't know that. Well good for us for today," White Sox manager Rick Renteria said. "They came in handy, obviously, with Alen and Sanchy doing that. Overall, I thought pretty decent ballgame."
Omar Narvaez and Avisail Garcia also homered for the White Sox, who got four innings of one-run ball from Rodon because of a rain delay that lasted one hour and 18 minutes. White Sox prospect Carson Fulmer picked up his first Major League win with two innings in relief.
• Fulmer bounces back, gets 1st big league win
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
Avi goes deep: Garcia's two-run homer in the seventh off Ryne Stanek gave him a career-high 14 and the South Siders a 5-2 lead. Garcia had three hits, extending his hitting streak to 10 games and raising his average to .327. The home run had a 105.2-mph exit velocity and launch angle of 27 degrees per Statcast™. Stanek's 100.7-mph fastball is second-hardest-hit pitch for a homer in the Majors this season, second to Rafael Devers' off a 102.8-mph heater by Albertin Chapman.
Going back to the beginning of the pitch tracking era, since 2008, Garcia's homer is tied for the fifth-hardest-hit pitch. It's tied for the White Sox hardest-hit for a home run with a Paul Konerko homer off Andrew Cashner on June 26, 2010.
"This is the big leagues," Cash said. "You got him to miss two breaking balls by a combined four and a half feet, and then chose to double up fastballs. I mean, Avisail Garcia is hitting .325 for a reason."
'Farq' in the Park: With runners on the corners and one out after Kevin Kiermaier's single off Aaron Bummer in the seventh, the White Sox brought in right-hander Danny Farquhar, who started the season with the Rays. He got Steven Souza Jr. to pop up in foul territory and Longoria to fly out, escaping the jam and keeping the White Sox lead at 3-2.
UPON FURTHER REVIEW
With runners on second and third and one out, Longoria hit a ball out to Garcia in right field for what appeared to be a routine sacrifice fly. Kiermaier scored on the throw, which skipped past Narvaez behind the plate and to the backstop. The Rays challenged that the ball went out of play, which would allow Souza to score and tie the game at 2. The call on the field was confirmed, and Souza remained at third base as the Rays lost their challenge.
Rays: Rays right-hander Matt Andriese will start the finale against the White Sox on Sunday at 2:10 p.m. ET, his first start since suffering a stress reaction in his right hip on June 10. He threw three scoreless innings of relief in his last appearance on Aug. 28.
White Sox:Lucas Giolito makes his third start of the season in the series finale with the Rays at 1:10 p.m. CT on Sunday. The No. 59 overall prospect, according to MLBPipeline.com, earned his first Major League victory in his last start on Aug. 27 vs. Detroit, allowing three hits and three walks over seven scoreless innings.
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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.
Fabian Ardaya is a reporter for MLB.com based in Chicago who covered the Rays on Saturday.