CHICAGO (AP) — Along with many of the White Sox hitters, Gordon Beckham hasn’t been pleased with his lack of offensive production.
He hopes that will change after his first career game-winning home run.
Beckham led off the bottom of the 11th inning with a homer and Melky Cabrera went 5 for 5 and the Chicago White Sox beat the Texas Rangers 3-2 on Sunday.
Ryan Rua and Leonys Martin homered for the Rangers, who dropped two of three to the White Sox.
The White Sox have won two straight after losing a season-high eight straight games.
Beckham homered on the first pitch in the 11th inning from Rangers reliever Alex Claudio (1-1).
“I feel I haven’t been doing that much lately. So that was a big pick-me-up for me and a great win,” said Beckham, who came in as a defensive replacement late in the game.
The White Sox have not scored more than five runs in the past 17 games. Chicago is also 29th in runs and 28th in batting average.
“We know we have to start kicking it into gear,” Beckham said. “I think everybody realizes that. You’re starting to see the offense come around a little bit. I feel like we’re having a lot better at-bats.”
The Rangers had opportunities to take the lead in the 10th and 11th innings.
Pinch-hitter Rougned Odor singled to center with one out in the 10th inning. During Prince Fielder’s at-bat, Odor went from first to third on White Sox reliever Zach Putnam’s wild pitch.
After Fielder walked, Putnam got out of the inning by getting Mitch Moreland to hit into double play.
The Rangers had the bases loaded in the 11th with one out for Hanser Alberto. White Sox reliever Jake Petricka (2-2) got Alberto to hit a bouncer to Beckham at third, who threw home to catcher Tyler Flowers who threw out Alberto at first to complete the double play and end the inning.
“You keep giving a ballclub an opportunity to stick around and don’t cash in on those opportunities, it can come back to hit you,” Rangers manager Jeff Banister said. “We had multiple opportunities to push runs across and didn’t.”
All five games on the White Sox homestand were decided by one run.
“Winning those tight games is huge,” Petricka said. “We’ve always been on the wrong side for the last week and half or so now it’s going to go our way.”
With runners on first and second in the sixth inning and the White Sox trailing 1-0, Alexei Ramirez blooped a one-out RBI single to right off Rangers reliever Ross Detwiler to score Jose Abreu from second and advance Cabrera to third.
Conor Gillaspie followed with a sacrifice fly to score Cabrera and gave the White Sox a 2-1 lead.
Detwiler, who was demoted to the bullpen after coming off the disabled list earlier in the month, allowed two runs and three hits in two-thirds of an inning.
Martin tied the game with a solo shot on a 1-2 pitch from White Sox starter Jose Quintana in the seventh inning. It was Martin’s fifth of the season, snapping an 0-for-21 streak.
Quintana allowed two runs and five hits in seven innings. He struck out five and walked two.
Rangers starter Yovani Gallardo pitched five scoreless innings. He allowed five hits and struck out three with one walk on 98 pitches.
“It seemed like I had to work out of trouble quite a bit and make pitches,” Gallardo said. “It’s not like I went out and had easy innings. … The command wasn’t there to be honest. “
In the first inning, Rua hit Quintana’s 2-1 pitch deep into the left-field seats for his first home run of the season. Rua was activated from the 60-day disabled list on Friday. The 25-year old was out with a fractured heel.
The White Sox failed to score in the third, despite having a runner at third with one out. Gillaspie was unable to score from third on Carlos Sanchez’s bloop single to left. Adam Eaton flied out to shallow left and Avisail Garcia struck out.
Cabrera robbed Shin-Soo Choo of a hit in the seventh inning with a diving catch.
Rangers: Texas is off on Monday and travels home to face Oakland on Tuesday. RHP Chi Chi Gonzalez is scheduled to make his fifth major league start.
White Sox: LHP John Danks is scheduled to start Monday at Minnesota. In 27 starts against Minnesota, he is 7-14 with a 5.67 ERA.
Rangers: Third baseman Adrian Beltre said Sunday his injured right thumb is “progressing little by little,” but that it’s still painful for him to swing a bat and he doesn’t know when he’ll be playing again. Beltre said he took swings over the weekend and was “searching for a grip that won’t hurt. I’m still working on it.” Rangers manager Jeff Banister said he didn’t know exactly when Beltre would return to the lineup. “When Adrian says that he’s ready to play then he’ll be back in playing,” Banister said, though he added he didn’t think Beltre would be still be sidelined by the All Star break.
Less than a week after winning the Stanley Cup, Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville, forward Andrew Shaw, and defenseman Michal Rozsival paid a visit to U.S. Cellular Field with the Stanley Cup. Quenneville, Shaw and Rozsival along with members of the White Sox and some of their children posed for a group picture with the Cup before the game.