Bullet-point recap, because the South Side Sox Meetup was more entertaining than the game.
*Jose Abreu gave this one an early jolt when he hit a two-run blast off Cole Hamels to give the Sox a quick lead.
*Then Hamels retired the next and final 19 White Sox he faced while the Rangers eventually got to Derek Holland. Holland had sidestepped one big jam when he loaded the bases with nobody out and allowed just one run, and he pitched around two extra outs after Tim Anderson booted a double-play ball in the fourth. But Holland caved in the fifth inning thanks to a Delino DeShields RBI double (after a borderline foul ball on a bunt) and a two-run homer by Elvis Andrus.
*That gave Texas a 4-2 lead, and the Rangers piled it on against the bullpen. Chris Beck allowed a two-run homer to Mike Napoli, the first batter he faced. David Holmberg stranded a leadoff double in the seventh, but gave up a leadoff homer in the eighth, followed by another rough outing by Michael Ynoa.
*The four-run Holmberg/Ynoa inning was especially deflating since the White Sox showed teeth against the Rangers bullpen for a second straight game. Jeff Banister pulled Hamels after 6 2⁄3 innings and 96 pitches -- he had just come back from injury -- and the White Sox jumped Alex Claudio again for two quick runs. He walked Yolmer Sanchez and Adam Engel, and both came around to score on a Kevan Smith double (Smith pinch-hit for Omar Narvaez, continuing Rick Renteria’s aggressive deployment of his catchers). That cut the Rangers lead to 6-4, but the Sox bullpen couldn’t hold that line.
*The outfield defense didn’t help -- and I mean the entire outfield. Engel and Willy Garcia both rounded off wind-blown flies too much, letting them drop, and Melky Cabrera turned an RBI single into a three-run triple when he failed to cut off Nomar Mazara’s sinking line drive.