Lack of timely hits costs Rangers vs. White Sox

Lack of timely hits costs Rangers vs. White Sox

ARLINGTON -- Nicky Delmonico's second home run of the night -- this one an inside-the-park shot -- in the eighth inning lifted the White Sox to a 4-3 victory over the Rangers on Friday night. The loss dropped the Rangers to 1 1/2 games behind the Angels for the second American League Wild Card spot.

The score was 3-3 when Delmonico led off the eighth against reliever Ricardo Rodriguez with a drive to deep right field. Nomar Mazara went back to the wall trying to make a leaping catch and the ball sailed just beyond his glove. The ball hit the top of the wall and Mazara hit it harder. The ball caromed hard, but Mazara landed on his left knee and fell to the ground. By the time second baseman Rougned Odor ran it down, Delmonico was steaming his way around third for an inside-the-parker. Mazara remained in the game.

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T.R. Sullivan has covered the Rangers since 1989, and for MLB.com since 2006. Follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger and listen to his podcast.

Scott Merkin has covered the White Sox for MLB.com since 2003. Read his blog, Merk's Works, follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin, on Facebook and listen to his podcast.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Mazara OK after crashing into right-field wall

Right fielder banged knee, but was able to stay in game

Mazara OK after crashing into right-field wall

ARLINGTON -- Rangers outfielder Nomar Mazara lost a battle with the right-field wall Friday night, but lived to fight another day.

Mazara had an ice pack on his left knee after the Rangers' 4-3 loss to the White Sox as the result of crashing into the wall on Nicky Delmonico's inside-the-park home run in the eighth inning. A post-game examination by Dr. Keith Meister revealed no structural damage to the knee.

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T.R. Sullivan has covered the Rangers since 1989, and for MLB.com since 2006. Follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Soft-tossers have saved the Rangers' bullpen

Bibens-Dirkx, Claudio proving successful despite below-average velocity

Soft-tossers have saved the Rangers' bullpen

ARLINGTON -- Austin Bibens-Dirkx and Alex Claudio have two of the slowest fastballs on the Rangers. Bibens-Dirkx averages 90.5 miles per hour with his fastball, and Claudio is at 86.7.

But they have been two of the Rangers' more effective relievers this season, and there may be a lesson in that at a time when clubs are trying to overload bullpens with as many hard throwers as possible.

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T.R. Sullivan has covered the Rangers since 1989, and for MLB.com since 2006. Follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Griffin's Players Weekend name hair-raising

When in Rome: 'Sweet Lettuce' points to pitcher's golden locks Aug. 25-27

Griffin's Players Weekend name hair-raising

ARLINGTON -- Rangers pitcher A.J. Griffin used to listen to "The Jim Rome Show" a lot, and one of the terms Rome used was "lettuce."

"That's their word for hair," Griffin said.

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T.R. Sullivan has covered the Rangers since 1989, and for MLB.com since 2006. Follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Perez ready to face former mentor Holland

Perez ready to face former mentor Holland

Rangers pitcher Martin Perez speaks highly of White Sox starter Derek Holland. The two left-handers, who square off Saturday night at Globe Life Park, were teammates on the Rangers from 2012-16. Holland was already established when Perez was called up for the first time in 2012.

"When I came up, that was the guy who helped me and taught me how to work at this level, how to do things," Perez said. "I really say to him, 'Thank you for all the things that you told me to help me in my career.' He likes to work hard. I always tried to have a model that I wanted to follow. He's a great guy."

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T.R. Sullivan has covered the Rangers since 1989, and for MLB.com since 2006. Follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Ragans spins six strong for Spokane

Ragans spins six strong for Spokane

Now into his second month playing in the Florida State League, Vladimir Guerrero Jr. is finding his power stroke.

Guerrero, MLBPipeline.com's No. 6 overall prospect (Blue Jays' No. 1), connected on his second home run in as many games on Friday, going 2-for-4 with two RBIs as Class A Advanced Dunedin blanked St. Lucie, 4-0.

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Mike Rosenbaum is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @GoldenSombrero. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Hamels, Beltre meet kids as part of charity event

Hamels, Beltre meet kids as part of charity event

ARLINGTON -- Best barbecue spots, nicknames in the clubhouse or stories from their time in the game … if the kids thought of the question, Cole Hamels and Adrian Beltre answered it.

The non-profit "Tia's Hope" and Cook Medical Center teamed with Hamels and Beltre to create "Memory Moments" as part of Players Trust's "Buses for Baseball" program, which provides transportation, tickets and unforgettable Major League Baseball experiences to children across the country.

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Sam Butler is a reporter for MLB.com based in Texas. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Mazara, Texas stay hot, make WC gains

Mazara, Texas stay hot, make WC gains

ARLINGTON -- Nomar Mazara's torrid bat shows no signs of cooling. He had five RBIs on Thursday night -- including a 3-run homer -- to carry the Rangers to their fourth straight come-from-behind victory with a 9-8 win over the White Sox at Globe Life Park.

Mazara's homer capped a four-run fifth inning for Texas, which clawed out of an early four-run deficit.

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Sam Butler is a reporter for MLB.com based in Texas.

Scott Merkin has covered the White Sox for MLB.com since 2003. Read his blog, Merk's Works, follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin, on Facebook and listen to his podcast.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

MLB.com Columnist

Richard Justice

Charging Rangers see path to postseason

AL Wild Card race crowded, but Texas making run after Deadline sale

Charging Rangers see path to postseason

There was Rangers manager Jeff Banister pumping a fist in the air after a victory over the Astros last weekend. He turned to see his pitching coach, Doug Brocail, doing the same as an impromptu dugout celebration broke out.

Wait, what? Weren't the Rangers out of it? Hadn't they just done a Trade Deadline sale of veterans to begin planning for 2018? What's happening here?

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Richard Justice has been a reporter for MLB.com since 2011. Read his columns and follow him on Twitter at @RichardJustice . This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Offense fueling Rangers' postseason push

Texas has won four straight, all in come-from-behind fashion

Offense fueling Rangers' postseason push

ARLINGTON -- All of a sudden, the Rangers are right back in the thick of the postseason chase.

With a 9-8 victory over the White Sox on Thursday at Globe Life Park, the Rangers have reeled off four wins in a row and have won seven of their past eight games, losing just once on this homestand. And, more important, Texas sits just 1 1/2 games out of the second American League Wild Card spot.

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Sam Butler is a reporter for MLB.com based in Arlington. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Elvis a crucial component of resurgence

Elvis a crucial component of resurgence

ARLINGTON -- A few weeks ago, it looked as though the Rangers' season was teetering on the brink of collapse. They had dropped six of nine games of a homestand, and Yu Darvish had just been shipped to Los Angeles at the non-waiver Trade Deadline.

But they went .500 on a six-game road trip, then took five of six games from the Astros and Tigers to open the current homestand. All of a sudden, an American League Wild Card berth is right there in their sights.

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Sam Butler is a reporter for MLB.com based in Texas. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Diekman encouraged by first rehab outing

Rangers' reliever pitches 1-2-3 inning in first game in 10 months

Diekman encouraged by first rehab outing

ARLINGTON -- Jake Diekman pitched in an organized game for the first time this year on Thursday night, going one inning in a rehab assignment for Double-A Frisco as he works his way back from a trio of surgeries he underwent to correct ulcerative colitis.

Diekman said he was more excited than nervous to pitch for the first time in 10 months. He threw 13 pitches -- eight for strikes -- striking out a pair of batters and inducing a groundout to another hitter to work a perfect inning.

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Sam Butler is a reporter for MLB.com based in Texas. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Rangers club 4 HRs to finish sweep of Tigers

Rangers club 4 HRs to finish sweep of Tigers

ARLINGTON -- The Rangers continued their climb into the American League Wild Card race by completing a three-game sweep of the Tigers with a 12-6 victory Wednesday night at Globe Life Park.

The Rangers, with their seventh win in their past 10 games, are now just two games behind the second Wild Card spot. They are one game behind in the loss column. The Tigers, who finished a stretch of 20 straight games without a day off, lost for the 10th time in their last 12.

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T.R. Sullivan has covered the Rangers since 1989, and for MLB.com since 2006. Follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger and listen to his podcast.

Jason Beck has covered the Tigers for MLB.com since 2002. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and listen to his podcast.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Mazara turning into RBI machine for Rangers

Mazara turning into RBI machine for Rangers

ARLINGTON -- Joey Gallo continues to hit spectacular home runs, but Nomar Mazara still leads the Rangers in RBIs.

These two have a chance to be at the heart of the Rangers' lineup for many years to come, and Mazara more than held his own Wednesday night when both players went deep in a 12-6 victory over the Tigers.

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T.R. Sullivan has covered the Rangers since 1989, and for MLB.com since 2006. Follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Daniels wins 1,000th game as Rangers GM

Daniels wins 1,000th game as Rangers GM

ARLINGTON -- The Rangers had a special post-game celebration following their 12-6 victory over the Tigers on Wednesday night.

The Rangers marked the occasion of their 1,000th win under general manager Jon Daniels since he was promoted after the 2005 season. This is his 12th season on the job, and the 1,000 wins are the third most by an American League general manager with his current team, behind only Brian Cashman of the Yankees (1,867) and Billy Beane of the Athletics (1,674).

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T.R. Sullivan has covered the Rangers since 1989, and for MLB.com since 2006. Follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Gomez recovering, hopes to return soon

Outfielder dealing with cyst on shoulder; umpire explains balk call

Gomez recovering, hopes to return soon

ARLINGTON -- Rangers outfielder Carlos Gomez lifted up his shirt Wednesday afternoon and showed why he has been out of the lineup for the past three days. It isn't pretty.

Gomez has been dealing with a sizable and painful cyst on the back of his right shoulder. It has been bothering him since it got infected on Sunday while playing on a hot and humid afternoon.

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T.R. Sullivan has covered the Rangers since 1989, and for MLB.com since 2006. Follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Rehabbing Diekman launches foundation

Lefty reliever makes announcement day before rehab assignment

Rehabbing Diekman launches foundation

ARLINGTON -- Wednesday, as it turned out, ended up being a pretty good day for Jake Diekman.

First came the news that he's headed out for a rehab assignment on Thursday with Double-A Frisco. The left-hander is scheduled to throw 15 pitches in his first game action this year. Diekman said he's keeping it pretty simple; he wants to be certain his fastball is under control before trying to mix it up.

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Sam Butler is a reporter for MLB.com based in Texas. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Rangers slug 3 homers to take down Tigers

Rangers slug 3 homers to take down Tigers

ARLINGTON -- The Rangers hit three home runs off of Tigers starter Justin Verlander and won for the fifth time in six games with a 10-4 victory on Tuesday night at Globe Life Park. The Tigers have lost nine of their last 11.

"That's a big boost for our guys," manager Jeff Banister said. "Great approach up and down the lineup, just continuing to make him work and hunt for pitches they could hit, hunting pitches up in the zone they could put the barrel on. To beat Verlander after the way he has been pitching is a big boost for our club."

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T.R. Sullivan has covered the Rangers since 1989, and for MLB.com since 2006. Follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger and listen to his podcast.

Jason Beck has covered the Tigers for MLB.com since 2002. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and Facebook.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Gallo rips gargantuan home run for Texas

Gallo rips gargantuan home run for Texas

ARLINGTON -- With another home run on Tuesday night, Rangers infielder Joey Gallo is slowly creeping up on Yankees outfielder Aaron Judge for the American League lead.

Gallo hit a two-run home run off of Justin Verlander in the Rangers' 10-4 win over the Tigers, giving him 34 for the season. The shot had an exit velocity of 108 mph and a distance of 459 feet, according to Statcast™. Judge is leading the league with 36 and Gallo is in third, one behind Royals third baseman Mike Moustakas.

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T.R. Sullivan has covered the Rangers since 1989, and for MLB.com since 2006. Follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Odor steals a run for Rangers with his legs

Odor steals a run for Rangers with his legs

ARLINGTON -- For the second game in a row, Rougned Odor's heads-up running on the basepaths paid off. After stealing two bases and scoring three runs in the Rangers' win on Monday, the second baseman provided what was, at the time, a crucial insurance run Texas needed in the seventh inning of Tuesday's 10-4 win.

The Tigers had scored twice in the top of the inning to cut the Rangers' lead to 5-3. Odor walked to lead off the inning, and with Robinson Chirinos batting, he stole second. Detroit catcher John Hicks' throw skipped past Ian Kinsler and into center field, allowing Odor to advance to third with nobody out.

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Sam Butler is a reporter for MLB.com based in Texas who covered the Rangers on Tuesday. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Kela's absence opens door for Rodriguez

Rookie reliever impresses in debut; Robinson seizing opportunity in CF; Diekman takes next step

Kela's absence opens door for Rodriguez

ARLINGTON -- The Rangers are going to play it conservative with right-handed reliever Keone Kela, who is on the disabled list with a sore right shoulder for the second time this season.

Kela has not resumed throwing since he went on the DL on Aug. 8.

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T.R. Sullivan has covered the Rangers since 1989, and for MLB.com since 2006. Follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Banister thrilled with manufactured victory

Banister thrilled with manufactured victory

ARLINGTON -- This is the kind of offensive game that makes a manager happy, and Jeff Banister was exactly that after the Rangers' 6-2 victory over the Tigers on Monday night.

"I felt like tonight offensively might have been our best approach all year long, with everything we did," Banister said.

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T.R. Sullivan has covered the Rangers since 1989, and for MLB.com since 2006. Follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Perez gets the win as Rangers top Tigers

Perez gets the win as Rangers top Tigers

ARLINGTON -- Left-hander Martin Perez overcame a two-run home run by Justin Upton in the first inning and helped pitch the Rangers to a 6-2 victory over the Tigers on Monday night at Globe Life Park. The win was the Rangers' fourth in five games and moved them to within three games in the American League Wild Card standings.

Perez won his second straight start, holding the Tigers to two runs on six hits, a walk and two strikeouts. He finished his night retiring 10 of the last 12 batters he faced.

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T.R. Sullivan has covered the Rangers since 1989, and for MLB.com since 2006. Follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger and listen to his podcast.

Jason Beck has covered the Tigers for MLB.com since 2002. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and listen to his podcast.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Rodriguez has a debut to remember

Rodriguez has a debut to remember

ARLINGTON -- Whenever a young player makes his Major League debut, there's always a chance the first-game jitters could get to him and make it memorable for all the wrong reasons.

But if there were any such nerves for Ricardo Rodriguez, he certainly didn't show it. The 24-year-old righty, who had his contract purchased from Double-A Frisco last week, threw a 12-pitch perfect inning in Monday's 6-2 win over the Tigers in his debut performance, striking out James McCann and Alex Presley and inducing a lineout from Jose Iglesias.

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Sam Butler is a reporter for MLB.com based in Texas. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

DeShields working on getting right vs. righties

DeShields working on getting right vs. righties

ARLINGTON -- Outfielders Carlos Gomez and Shin-Soo Choo were both described as being "a little banged up" by manager Jeff Banister, which is why both were out of the starting lineup on Monday night.

Both are expected to be back in there on Tuesday. The significance of their absence is that Delino DeShields was in the lineup against a right-handed starting pitcher on Monday (Tigers pitcher Michael Fulmer) for the first time since July 9.

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T.R. Sullivan has covered the Rangers since 1989, and for MLB.com since 2006. Follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Cody strikes out 11 for Down East

Cody strikes out 11 for Down East

Alex Verdugo's hot streak continued as he hit his sixth homer of the season and drove in three runs in Triple-A Oklahoma City's 9-4 win over Round Rock on Monday night.

The Dodgers' No. 2 prospect (No. 28 overall) got off to a fast start as he doubled home a pair of runs in the second and then hit a solo blast in the fourth before finishing 2-for-3.

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William Boor is a reporter for MLBPipeline.com. Follow him on Twitter at @wboor. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Beltre hands out 3K hit gifts to teammates, staff

Beltre hands out 3K hit gifts to teammates, staff

ARLINGTON -- Adrian Beltre came to work on Sunday bearing gifts for his Rangers teammates and staff to commemorate his 3,000th hit.

Beltre was passing out an autographed bottle of Scotch and a replica lineup card for everybody. They will also receive a commemorative cigar with a special logo and another gift Beltre is not ready to announce.

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T.R. Sullivan has covered the Rangers since 1989, and for MLB.com since 2006. Follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Caught in rundown, Beltre takes only path out

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Caught in rundown, Beltre takes only path out

Throughout his career, Adrian Beltre has repeatedly proven that he is going to march to the beat of his own drum. If he doesn't like getting touched on the head, he's not going to pretend to like it just because that's how people celebrate in baseball. If the on-deck circle isn't where he wants to stand, he'll move it so it fits his world.

During Sunday's game against the Astros, Beltre got stuck in a rundown, so he took the baseline and stretched it to where he wanted it to be.

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