ARLINGTON—Josh Hamilton’s two-run homer keyed a five-run first, former Cub Rich Harden pitched six innings despite more control problems, and the Texas Rangers held on to beat the White Sox 6-5 on Wednesday night.Harden (1-1) allowed three runs and four hits after lasting less than five innings due to wildness in three of his first four starts. This time he hit two batters and walked five, giving him 23 walks in his five starts.The White Sox could not capitalize until Carlos Quentin ended a 2-for-37 slide with a three-run homer off Harden in the sixth that reduced the deficit to 5-3. The Rangers signed Harden as a free agent in December to take over one of the top two spots in their rotation, but Harden’s once-dynamic fastball has been less than imposing so far.Neftali Feliz allowed RBI singles in the ninth to A.J. Pierzynski and Alexei Ramirez before retiring Juan Pierre on a groundout for his third save in four chances.Jake Peavy (0-2) was in trouble early as Hamilton’s 430-foot blast got the Rangers rolling in the first. One out later, Peavy walked three straight.Two scored on Joaquin Arias’ single, and Julio Borbon followed with an RBI single to make it 5-0.But Peavy got untracked, retiring 16 of the next 18 from the first through the sixth.Peavy gave up six runs and six hits in 6 1/3 innings with seven strikeouts and five walks.Michael Young hit a ground-rule double off Peavy in the seventh, and Young later scored on David Murphy’s double off reliever Randy Williams to stretch Texas’ lead to 6-3.White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen left slumping second baseman Gordon Beckham out of his starting lineup for the third time in 21 games this season.Beckham’s second major league season is off to a 15-for-73 start with four hits in his last 33 at bats.
NOTES—Peavy allowed seven runs and seven hits with seven walks over 4 1/3 innings in his previous start, a 10-2 loss to Tampa Bay last Thursday. … Guillen said Beckham would be back in the lineup for Thursday’s series finale against Texas. … Before the game the Rangers reinstated RHP Tommy Hunter from the 15-day disabled list and assigned him to Triple-A Oklahoma City. Hunter, who has been on the DL since April 4 with a left oblique strain, threw two perfect innings in an extended spring training game Wednesday in Surprise, Ariz., and will throw in the bullpen Friday in Arizona before reporting to Oklahoma City. … Peavy threw 41 pitches in the first as the Rangers sent 10 to the plate. … Harden was the beneficiary of three double plays.