ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — A shaky three-run third inning was all the Rays needed to shuffle the White Sox back to their losing ways Wednesday.
It didn’t help that the Sox, who broke a five-game losing skid with a series-opening win against the Rays on Tuesday, managed only four hits against Jacob Faria and three relievers in a 3-1 loss, their sixth in the last seven games.
Continuing on a stretch of not-so-crisp baseball on their current road trip, the Sox (25-32) made two errors: Tim Anderson not getting the ball out of his glove with Corey Dickerson moving in front of him from second to third in the first inning for his 13th of the season and right fielder Avisail Garcia’s bobble of Tim Beckham’s base hit allowing a second run to score on a bases-loaded single in the third. Garcia’s errant throw through the infield also allowed Beckham to advance to second.
The Rays (30-31) got their third run of the inning when the left-handed hitting Colby Rasmus, who was given an unusually early intentional walk to load the bases for Beckham, managed to beat third baseman Todd Frazier’s throw home on Daniel Robertson’s sharp grounder. Frazier’s throw looked to be there in time but Rasmus eluded catcher Kevan Smith’s tag and it was 3-1.
“Smitty was a little slow in reacting, coming across with the tag,’’ manager Rick Renteria said.
Renteria, who before the game was doubling down on his emphasis on clean baseball, wasn’t overly critical afterward. The bottom line in this one was that one run isn’t going to win many games.
“Today, that wasn’t an ugly game, we just weren’t able to score enough runs to stay ahead,’’ Renteria said.
The Sox scored in the first inning against Faria, making his major-league debut, when Leury Garcia led off with an infield single, stole second and scored on Jose Abreu’s single through the right side.
Starter Mike Pelfrey (2-5, 3.80 ERA) would encounter damage in the third inning only but failed to finish six innings, going 5„ and giving up the three runs (two earned) on six hits and three walks (two intentional). He struck out four.
“That was maybe the worst my stuff has been since I’ve been here,’’ Pelfrey said.
Rodon, Shields set for next
Left-hander Carlos Rodon (biceps bursitis) made his first rehab start near his home and college for Class A Winston-Salem on Tuesday, but the process shifts to Class AAA Charlotte for his second start Sunday at Gwinnett.
The former No. 3 overall pick out of North Carolina State, who gave up five runs on four hits with six strikeouts over 3„ innings at the Carolina Mudcats, could be lining up for a June 26 start against the Yankees although Renteria says there is no timetable for Rodon’s or right-hander James Shields’ return.
“He came out really healthy, which is what we’re most encouraged about,’’ Renteria said of Rodon.
Shields starts Thursday at Gwinnett, following his first rehab start of four innings (one unearned run) for Charlotte on Saturday.
Right-hander Jake Petricka (lat strain) made his third rehab appearance Wednesday, pitching a scoreless inning.
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