Rangers-White Sox Preview
Texas Rangers at Chicago White Sox
- Since 2011, the White Sox are 8-3 at home against the Rangers. Their .727 win percentage at home against Texas during this time is their second highest against any AL opponent (vs. Mariners - .733, 11-4).
- Since June 17, the Rangers are just 3-19 (.136) on the road, including losing each of their last six road games. It's the second worst road record in MLB during this time (Rockies - .105, 2-17).
- When pitching at home, Nick Martinez is 0-4 with a 7.86 ERA and a .327 opponent batting average and when pitching on the road, Martinez is 1-3 with a 3.66 ERA and a .279 opponent batting average. The 4.20 home-road ERA differential (road better than home) is the second largest in MLB this season (min. 5 GS at home and on road).
- Against left-handed batters, Hector Noesi has a .232 opponent batting average. Among right-handed AL pitchers, Noesi's .232 opponent batting average is the sixth lowest (min. 250 batters faced).
- Elvis Andrus currently has a 10-game hit streak going, tied for the second-longest active streak in MLB. During this 10-game hit streak, Andrus is batting .385 with two doubles and six RBI.
- Alexei Ramirez has had two-plus hits in each of his last four games and in 10 of his last 19 games. Ramirez' 10 multi-hit games since July 10 is tied for the third most during this time. Since July 10, Ramirez is batting .329 with three home runs and 15 RBI.
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By NICOLINO DIBENEDETTO
(AP) -- Tyler Flowers, Jose Abreu and Mother Nature were vital to the Chicago White Sox continuing their home success against the Texas Rangers.
With rain expected again Tuesday, Flowers and Abreu go for another big offensive display in the middle game of this series with the lowly Rangers.
Chicago (55-58) beat Texas for the eighth time in nine meetings at U.S. Cellular Field, with Monday's 5-3 rain-shortened win.
Flowers and Abreu did the damage before the game was called in the seventh inning, combining for five hits while driving in all the White Sox's runs.
Abreu leads the majors with 31 homers and 86 RBIs to become the first White Sox rookie to hit those marks since Ron Kittle finished 1983 with 35 homers and 100 RBIs. He's also the first rookie in the majors to reach those numbers after 98 games since Mark McGwire had 37 and 86, respectively, in 1987.
Abreu was named AL player and rookie of the month for July, thanks to his .374 average.
"I don't really like to talk about myself, but I am surprised," Abreu said through a translator. "I wasn't expecting to have all this success, definitely not all these awards."
Flowers has also been impressive. The catcher is hitting .458 with three homers and 13 RBIs in 15 games, improving his season average 39 points to a career-high .252. He is 7 for 19 (.368) over seven home meetings with the Rangers, coming a double shy of the cycle while driving in three runs Monday.
"The way he's been swinging the bat and doing things, you feel pretty confident when he goes up there," manager Robin Ventura said.
Offensive production could be key with John Danks (9-6, 4.50 ERA) on the mound, since he owns an 8.27 ERA in three starts since the All-Star break.
The offense bailed him out in Thursday's 7-4 win at Detroit, when he allowed four runs and two homers with four walks and a hit batter in five innings while not getting a decision.
The left-hander is 1-0 with a 2.49 ERA in four home starts against the Rangers (43-69), with all of them ending in White Sox wins.
Texas has lost the first four of a nine-game trip, and turns to Colby Lewis (7-8, 5.98), who was solid in Wednesday's 3-2 win over the New York Yankees. The right-hander yielded a pair of solo homers in seven innings - his longest outing since June 17, 2012, a span of 21 outings.
Lewis missed the second half of 2012 due to elbow surgery and all of the following year while undergoing an unprecedented hip procedure for a major league pitcher that was just short of a full hip replacement.
He's compiled a 3.44 ERA and a 1-2 record over his last three starts.
"I was definitely an adjustment period getting used to a prosthetic hip, I guess," Lewis said. "As the weeks have kind of transitioned into the second half, I feel like every time I take the mound, I feel like I'm getting stronger, my mechanics are sharper."
Lewis has a 1.33 ERA while winning three straight starts against the White Sox, allowing one run in 5 1-3 innings of a 6-3 victory April 19. He tossed a five-hitter in a 4-0 win in his last visit to the South Side on May 16, 2011.
Updated August 5, 2014