Rangers visit White Sox with .500 in sight (Jul 02, 2017)

BY AP • July 1, 2017

CHICAGO -- The Texas Rangers will try to climb back to .500 when they meet the Chicago White Sox in the rubber match of a three-game series Sunday afternoon.

Texas (40-41) is seeking back-to-back wins after a 10-4 victory over the White Sox on Saturday. The offensive outburst marked the fifth time in the past month that the Rangers have scored double-digit runs.

Rangers manager Jeff Banister hopes the offense will continue to produce, which will remove pressure from a slumping bullpen. Banister has decided to use a closer-by-committee approach after right-hander Matt Bush blew his fifth save opportunity of the season in the series opener.

"Our hitters, one thing they do love to do, they love to go to the batter's box," Banister said. "There's not one of them that doesn't like to hit. They all have the skill set to be able to produce runs, whether it's with a home run, whether it's hitting behind runners, whether it's our speed on the bases. We've got to continue that."

Chicago (35-45) will try to wrap up a 10-game homestand on a high note. After Sunday's game, the White Sox will head to Oakland and Colorado for their final games before the All-Star break.

White Sox left-hander Jose Quintana (4-8, 4.37 ERA) will make his 17th start of the season Sunday. The 28-year-old has not allowed a run in either of his past two outings, and is 2-0 with a 0.90 ERA in his past three starts.

In five career starts against the Rangers, Quintana is 2-1 with a 3.38 ERA. His most recent outing against Texas was April 22, 2016, when he pitched seven scoreless innings en route to a 5-0 victory.

Right-hander Tyson Ross (1-1, 6.14 ERA) will make his fourth start for the Rangers. During his last time out, Ross limited the Cleveland Indians to one run on two hits in six innings. An ugly start against Toronto (seven runs in three innings) accounts for his inflated ERA after his first three starts.

Ross, 30, has pitched well against the White Sox in his career. He is 3-0 with a 1.65 ERA in three appearances (two starts). He has walked five and struck out 17 in 16 1/3 innings.

The White Sox hope to have right fielder Avisail Garcia back in the lineup after a three-game absence because of a sore left knee. The 26-year-old said Saturday that he planned to return Sunday or Monday.

Garcia has enjoyed a breakout season and has a good chance to represent the White Sox at the All-Star Game. He is hitting .318 with 11 home runs and 51 RBIs.

"It's still three months left, but I'm in a better position right now because I've been learning," Garcia said. "We're still working, and I'm going to try to get better every year, every day."

Rangers shortstop Elvis Andrus is hitting .364 in his last 13 games and has recorded a hit in 28 of his last 33 contests. His 11 home runs already represent a career high.

Andrus said he was happy to help his pitching staff with a steady dose of offense.

"That's what it's all about," Andrus said. "They're going to have our back, and right now we're having their back."



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