It was already looking like a dud night for the Rangers through six innings. But the Chicago White Sox turned a bases-loaded triple play in the seventh to take the Rangers’ 5-0 loss at U.S. Cellular Field to another level of head-scratching. It’s the first time in 2016 Texas has been held scoreless. The series resumes at 1:10 p.m. Saturday.
Pitching: Martin Perez allowed five runs, including three in the sixth inning before being replaced by Phil Klein after 5 2/3. The White Sox scored a run each in the second and third innings. Melky Cabrera singled and later came home from third on a wild pitch to give Chicago a 1-0 lead. In the third, Adam Eaton led off with a double, moved to third on Austin Jackson’s sacrifice bunt and and scored on Jose Abreu’s sac-fly to center.
Perez retired the side in the fourth and used a double play to overcome a throwing error by Rougned Odor that put the lead-off man on in the fifth.
After two quick outs in the sixth, however, Perez walked Todd Frazier and surrendered consecutive run-scoring doubles to Cabrera and Brett Lawrie to give the White Sox a 4-0 lead. Klein took over and was greeted by Jerry Sand’s run-scoring single to put the Rangers in a 5-0 hole.
Tom Wilhelmsen pitched the eighth.
Hitting: The Rangers, held to two singles through the first six innings, finally had something cooking in seventh. Prince Fielder led off with a double and moved to third on Adrian Beltre’s single. Ian Desmond walked to load the bases with no outs for Mitch Moreland. Moreland scorched a line drive to right-fielder Adam Eaton, who made the running catch towards the line. He quickly threw to first to double up Desmond, who figured the ball wouldn’t be caught. Fielder, inexplicably, was caught off third base, and Beltre was caught off second. The White Sox finally tagged out Fielder between home and third for the triple play, which officially went 9-3-2-6-2-5.
Notable: Beltre played his 2,500 game at third base, second only to Hall of Famer Brooks Robinson ... the White Sox triple play in the seventh was the first against the Rangers since 1991 and the first against them on the road since 1981. It’s the seventh time the Rangers have been caught in a triple play. It’s the first triple play turned by the White Sox since Sept. 18, 2006.