By Schuyler Dixon
ARLINGTON — Hector Santiago allowed two in five-plus innings filling in for Jake Peavy on Thursday night, Tyler Flowers hit a three-run homer and the Chicago White Sox beat Texas 3-1, handing the Rangers their first series loss of the season.
Flowers’ drive just inside the foul pole in left field was the third straight hit after Texas right-hander Justin Grimm (2-1) retired 10 in a row on the day he was named AL rookie of the month.
Adrian Beltre’s homer in the second was the only hit through five innings against Santiago (1-1), who had six strikeouts and two walks in 5 1-3 innings. The left-hander made his first start of the season and fifth of his career after Peavy was scratched because of back spasms.
Addison Reed pitched around two of Chicago’s eight walks, striking out the side in the ninth for his 10th save and second in two nights.
The coldest May game at Rangers Ballpark came just three weeks after the coldest day game there — and the Rangers lost both.
The game-time temperature of 44 was 37 degrees cooler than the previous night. It was a 40-degree difference on April 10, when the temperature at first pitch was 39 degrees for 2-0 loss to Tampa Bay in a day game after it had been 79 the night before.
The Rangers were the last team in the majors without a series loss, but now they’ve gone two series without winning after splitting four games with Minnesota last weekend. The White Sox won two straight after Texas took the opener.
Grimm, who had a 1.59 ERA in three April starts to earn rookie of the month honors, was cruising with two outs in the sixth when Conor Gillaspie and Alexei Ramirez singled before Flowers drove a hanging breaking ball for his fourth homer of the season.
After walking three in the first 2 1-3 innings, Grimm didn’t give up another free pass and tied his career high of nine strikeouts set last month against Seattle. He allowed six hits in 6 2-3 innings.
Santiago, whose first seven appearances this season were in relief, gave up his second hit when Ian Kinsler doubled with one out in the sixth, and he was replaced by Matt Lindstrom after walking Elvis Andrus. Lindstrom threw a wild pitch and walked Lance Berkman to load the bases, but got Beltre to ground into an inning-ending double play.
Beltre had another chance to do some damage in the eighth but struck out on a slow breaking ball from Jesse Crain.
The White Sox trailed 1-0 in the third when they loaded the bases with one out on singles by Alejandro De Aza and Adam Dunn and a walk to Alex Rios. But Grimm struck out Paul Konerko and Gillaspie on six strikes in seven pitches.