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August 2011 Archives

Peavy's comments after White Sox 7-6 loss to Twins

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The Minnesota Twins wasted no time putting the White Sox in a deep hole on Wednesday afternoon, hitting three consecutive doubles against Jake Peavy before Jason Kubel and Luke Hughes hit two-run homers to build a 6-0 lead.

The Sox were looking for a three-game sweep before their important three-game series in Detroit that starts Friday.

They rallied to get within 7-6 and take the game to the last at-bat, but in the end, it was the six-run first that did them in.

Here are Peavy's postgame comments:

On his first-inning issues:

"They were hitting the ball to left field and the ball was traveling to left field pretty well. Obviously I didn't make a lot of good pitches. I don;t know. They got the ball in the air to left field and that's all you needed to do today. You look at balls Jason Kubel hit and that's a home run.

On tough part of his career, 13 months following major surgery to re-attach torn lat:

"It's the toughest part of my career just because I'm not feeling how I always felt. We go out there on some days and have some pretty good stuff. Some days you don't have good enough stuff. i had good enough stuff today to compete. Like I said, that ball to Kubel, he put his head down and was upset at himself. If we get him out right there, I give up two runs in the first and then you strikeout Valencia to end the inning you give up two runs and we have a chance to win the game.''

"I don't know what to say. That first inning was unbelievable.''

On the team still having hope of catching Detroit:

"I don't see much else that we can do other than go in and take two out of three.

"We gotta go in there and win three, that's how I look at it. A month to play, I mean obviously two out of three is going to help. At some point in time, in these next three or when the Tigers come here we have to beat them three games to have a chance to climb back in it.''

"I feel pretty good right now. I have a hard time coming back because I just never know what I'm going to get every five or six days. The next spring training will be 20 months will be past that 18 month period. They told me at that point in time, it's not going to get much better. You are what you are at that point in time.''

Regrets about coming back too soon?

"I don't. I love to compete. Today I competed as hard as I've ever competed. I left everything I have on the field. If I could go back and take one thing away, I probably set myself back with the relief appearance I had and that was all my decision.

"I love to compete. I competed as hard as I could today. A few of those balls on a normal day are not close to being a home run and we win that game. i know that's hard to look and see but that's just the way I look at it. I could have easily tucked my head between my legs after getting booed off the mound in the first and not competed but I can hold my head high walking out of here because I gave everything I had today.''

Viciedo homers in 2011 White Sox debut

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SEATTLE -- Dayan Viciedo hit a home run in his second at-bat for the White Sox, breaking a scoreless tie by lining a three-run shot to center field against Mariners left-hander Jason Vargas on Sunday.

Viciedo was called up from AAA Charlotte when right fielder Carlos Quentin went on the disabled list Saturday. He did not play in Saturday's game but batted sixth and played right field on Sunday.

Viciedo blooped a single to center field in his first at-bat. The home run came on an 0-1 pitch and gave the White Sox, who are trying for a three-game series sweep of the Mariners, a 3-0 lead.

Viciedo walked to load the bases loaded in the sixth, right before catcher Tyler Flowers hit a grand slam. The Sox scored six in the inning and led 9-0.

Dunn's playing time will be cut in September

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SEATTLE -- Adam Dunn was not the least bit surprised.

This has been the season from the netherworld for the $56 million slugger, so when he was informed that manager Ozzie Guillen planned to talk to him about reduced playing time, Dunn took it in stride.

"I'm a realist, not an idiot,'' Dunn said before the game Sunday. "We're right in the middle of things. What do you do? What do you say?"

The subject of his failure to produce - Dunn is batting .163 with 156 strikeouts - numbers that put his season among the worst ever by a major league player - has become an increasingly irritating one for the good-natured Texan.

"He has handled it very, very good,'' manager Ozzie Guillen said. "Every time he gets an at-bat, my heart stops just because I want him to produce for him and for us, but at least for him to feel better that he can help some time.''

Dunn appreciated Guillen's thoughts, "but that gets me nowhere, other than sanity,'' he said Sunday. "I don't know how else to handle it. I can take shoelaces out of my shoes but other than that, that's all I can do.''

"These are the guys who matter when it comes down to it,'' he said, looking around the visitors clubhouse at Safeco Field. "That's the hardest part about the whole thing. If it was me, I could get over it. But it's the guys in here. I don't know how else to put it. It sucks. I don't know what else to tell you other than it sucks."

Dayan Viciedo's arrival from AAA gives Guillen more lineup flexibility and opens the door to sit Dunn. Viciedo made an almost instant impact, breaking a scoreless tie with a three-run home run in the fourth inning. Against Mariners left-hander Jason Vargas, Dunn was benched on Sunday with Brent Lillibridge at first base, Viciedo in right field and Paul Konerko at designated hitter. Dunn has been playing first against right-handers because of Konerko's sore calf, but Viciedo can play first and could be used as a DH against right-handers with Dunn on the bench.

"I'll talk to [Dunn] about it, the way we are going to use him,'' Guillen said. "I'm not going to just bench him right away. But obviously I'm going to try to make the best lineup that's right for the ballclub. If I don't think he's the right one, he'll be on the bench.

"I hope I never see a thing like that again. He handle it very, very good. He never drag people down. He never push his head down. Obviously it's frustrating and obviously he's embarrassed. He should. But he just keeps playing. So do we.

"He feels horrible because he can't help the ballclub. As a human being, I don't care how tough you are. You have to feel bad. Maybe not because of the fans or [chairman] Jerry [Reinsdorf] or [general manager] Kenny [Williams] paid this money. Just because his teammates, they are more important than the fans or people booing him or paying him.''

Danks shuts out Mariners

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SEATTLE - Dayan Viciedo was not in the starting lineup when the White Sox played the Mariners late Saturday night. With John Danks pitching a three-hit shutout, he wasn't needed.

Fans have been waiting all season for somebody to give the Sox' pitter-patter lineup a jolt. Viciedo, a 22-year-old Cuban who batted .297 with 20 homers and 78 RBI for AAA Charlotte, is viewd as the savior everyone has waited for. And he knows it, too.

"I heard about it and that made me feel good,'' Viciedo said before the Sox defeated the Mariners 3-0 for their second straight victory.

With Danks (6-9) striking out 10 and being in complete control, the Sox had no need for Viciedo - although Seattle right-hander Michael Pineda allowed only three hits while striking out eight and walking one over six innings.

After Pineda opened with three perfect innings, Juan Pierre, Alejandro De Aza and Paul Konerko hit consecutive singles to make it 1-0 in the fourth. Alexei Ramirez scored De Aza with a sacrifice fly to make it 2-0. The Sox did not have another hit until De Aza hit his second home run of the season in the eighth against reliever Chance Ruffin.

The Sox (65-65) stayed within seven games of the first place Detroit Tigers in the AL Central.

They go for the series sweep as they complete a five-game road trip on Sunday.

Lillibridge homer helps White Sox tip Mariners

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SEATTLE - Brent Lillibridge had an Adam Dunn kind of game --when Dunn was stringing together 40-homer seasons, not struggling to hit .170 as he is this year.

Lillibridge, playing first base with Dunn on the bench against Mariners lefty starter Charlie Furbush, was 1-for-5 with three strikeouts but also hit a two-run, go-ahead homer in the Sox' 4-2 win against the Seattle Mariners on Friday night.

"This kid is all or nothing,'' Sox manager Ozzie Guillen said. "Every time we put him out there he does something to help us win a game.''

The result enabled the Sox (64-65) to stay within seven games of the first-place Detroit Tigers in the American League Central. The Tigers beat the Minnesota Twins 8-1.

Jake Peavy (6-6) pitched six solid innings, leaving with a 4-2 lead after scattering seven hits and three walks while striking out eight.

"He wasn't very sharp but he did what he had to do,'' Guillen said. "We're happy to win the game.''

It's hard to imagine that Lillibridge, a $430,000 a year bargain, outslugging Dunn, a $12 million bust. Lillibridge, with 12 homers, has earned $35,833 per homer. With 11, Dunn has earned $1,090,909 a pop.

"This kid can help himself to make a few dollars because he can do everything - play the outfield, all the infield positions, run very fast and hit the ball out of the park once in a while,'' Guillen said.

Lillibridge, who is from Bothell, Wash., celebrated the homer during the fifth against Furbush by pointing to his cheering family sitting in the 23rd row behind home plate.

The Sox offense went silent after that, the only hit a blooper down the right-field line by Tyler Flowers, who would get picked off by Tom Wilhelmsen.

Matt Thornton got two outs, Jesse Crain got four and left-hander Chris Sale pitched the ninth inning for his fifth save.
The Sox could have made it easier on Sale because they loaded the bases in the ninth with nobody out and didn't score. Lillibridge and Paul Konerko flied out to short right and Alex Rios grounded out to second against former Sox Jeff Gray.

"Put it this way: That's White Sox baseball,'' Guillen said. "That's the White Sox disease. We don't put games away.''

Viciedo on way; Quentin goes on DL

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SEATTLE -- The long-awaited 2011 debut of Dayan Viciedo in the White Sox lineup will likely take place Saturday. The slugging right fielder will be brought up from AAA Charlotte to take the place of right fielder Carlos Quentin, who is going on the disabled list.

Quentin's shoulder feels better, he said, but he hasn't been able to do baseball-related activities.

Manager Ozzie Guillen said Viciedo could play right field or first base, an indication Adam Dunn's playing time may be cut now that Guillen has another option at first base.

Two outs, two sides to Dunn's "walk-off"

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ANAHEIM, Calif. -- There were two views on whether Adam Dunn forgot how many outs there were during the third inning of the White Sox' 8-0 loss to the Los Angeles Angels on Wednesday night.

Dunn, playing first base, said he was walking off the field toward the Sox dugout to toss the ball out because it was scuffed. Sox manager Ozzie Guillen said Dunn thought there were three outs when there were two.

It was no big deal in the big scheme of things and had no bearing on the outcome of the game. There were no runners on base after Bobby Abreu grounded out with Dunn making the putout for the second out.

"The ball was scuffed. I was just throwing the ball out," Dunn said.

Asked if he thought Dunn forgot how many outs there were, Guillen said, "Yes, and he tried to make a pretty good move.''
"I play this game for 30 years. You can't make the move for somewhere else. He forgot it. I don't blame him. The way we play, I forgot how many outs there was. He was thinking about his next at-bat I guess.''

Dunn was informed of Guillen's take on the situation but stuck to his story.

Dunn went 0-for-3 with two strikeouts against Angels ace Jered Weaver. His batting average dropped to .165.

"He just doesn't get in a patter,'' Dunn said. "He's got so many good pitches and he's tough. You only see him a couple times. He's just tough."

White Sox' Konerko gets 2,000th hit

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ANAHEIM, Calif. -- Paul Konerko became the 13th player in history to get 2,000 hits while a White Sox. What he liked most is that it tied the game. It also was like his first career hit, a line drive to the opposite field in right.

"It was nice to tie the game there [4-4] and you definitely want it in a winning fashion,'' Konerko said after the Sox lost 5-4 to the Los Angeles Angels on Tuesday night. "It is what it is. I'm one of those guys where round numbers are nice and all, but you're always thinking about the next one. It would have been nice to win, but it wasn't in the cards.'

"I wish we could have turned it in our favor. It would have been a big win.''

One of Konerko's first thoughts after the hit was about Pete Rose.

"One of those where it's nice for your friends and family,'' Konerko said. "But when you get a hit like that, the first thing you think of is, how the hell did Pete Rose get 4,000 hits? That's the first thing. Or [Derek] Jeter [who recently passed 3,000] do this from the time you're a kid ..wife and just seems like you do it your whole life, and for someone to have 1,000 more hits or 2,000 more, it just seems like those guys are good.

"It's cool, it falls in the category of something you'll enjoy more when you're done playing. I'm glad it came when it was a meaningful hit in the game. It was a hitter's hit. It was a good hit. A line drive to right, like my first hit. It was cool, but another fight tomorrow.''

"Awesome,'' Sox manager Ozzie Guillen said of the feat. "My God. The way he get it too, he means a lot to White Sox organization and baseball. One of pure hitters in baseball.''

The Sox are 6 1/2 games out but not finished, Konerko said, because they have six games left with Detroit.

"We got heads-to-heads left with some teams. We've got to hang in there and try to pick up when we can when we don't play them. And when we do play them, two out of three might not work. We might have to sweep somebody here and there to make this thing happen.''

Danks: Find a way to bring back Buehrle

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ANAHEIM, Calif. - John Danks knows what Mark Buehrle brings to the table as a starting pitcher.

The White Sox left-hander has witnessed first-hand what the veteran lefty offers as a teammate, clubhouse presence and friend.

And he doesn't want to see him go. Danks recalls thinking the same thing about Paul Konerko after Konerko's contract was up after last season. He hoped some how, some way, the Sox front office would bring Konerko back.

"I would say it's similar to the Paulie deal last offseason,'' Danks said Tuesday before Buehrle took the loss in the Los Angeles Angels 5-4 win against the Sox on Peter Bourjos' walk-off single against Jason Frasor in the ninth inning. "If there is any way in the world you can bring him back you kind of have to. I'm not a GM, I don't know all the business of the game, but from a teammate and player's perspective here's a guy you cant afford to let go play in another uniform.''

Buehrle, 32, might go because he'll be an expensive piece in the 2012 puzzle, and the Sox have rookie left-hander Chris Sale waiting in the wings to jump from the bullpen to the starting rotation. Buehrle has been the anchor of the Sox rotation, but Danks himself might be ready to assume that role - that is if the Sox decide to invest in him long term. Danks' contract is up after next season.

Buehrle has some years left as long as he wants to pitch. He's 32.

"He's been the guy since I've been here, the first guy who made me feel comfortable,'' Danks said. "I felt we were pretty close, but if I was doing something wrong he was the first one to tell me about it, too. For lack of a better word he's a true professional You don't stay in this game and have the success he has without being one. He goes about his business the right way.

"We hang out on the road. We go to lunch and stuff. We talk about everything from baseball to whatever. It's good. He's been a guy who has helped me.''

Buehrle has hinted in the past about retiring after the season in order to spend more time with his wife and sons, but lately - along with a streak of allowing three runs or less in 18 starts - he appears to be leaning toward pitching some more.

"He's focused and committed and he's playing for more time, I think,'' Sox pitching coach Don Cooper said. "I think he wants to continue to play.''

Against the Angels, Buehrle never felt right from the start.

"That's about as bad as it can get and still get a quality start,'' said Buehrle, who gave up four runs (three earned) in six innings. "I think besides the two strikeouts I think every ball they hit was pretty good. I wasn't fooling too many guys out there.

"It was probably one of the worst nights I had as far as everything. It kind of started out in the bullpen but usually you have a bad warmup in the bullpen and you come out and say everything will change. But everything that was in the bullpen I carried it right into the game. I didn't make too many good pitches.''

The Sox fell to 6 1/2 games behind the Detroit Tigers, the leaders in the American League Central.

"I think [losses] are frustrating because obviously we need to win,'' Buehrle said. "You look up there early and see that Detroit won. We had to win the game just to stay on pace. Obviously we have to come back tomorrow and keep on battling.''

Buehrle may not have had his best stuff but Cooper will take his chances with him on most nights.

"His stuff is not what it was but he's able to pitch and change speeds and he's as steady as he has been,'' Cooper said. "His transition [to pitching with slightly less velocity] looking back was a fairly easy one because he never relied on stuff. He always relied on movement and location. When his stuff is not quite the same he's committed to throwing to the glove and changing speeds.''

And he sticks to the basics of pitching.

"He's always gotten ahead of hitters, got ground balls, fielded his position, held runners and picked guys off,'' Cooper said. "His whole career. All the things you need to do to give your team a chance to win and have a successful career.''

"He's getting guys out without throwing 95,'' Danks said. "II tell him how to throw the invisible fastball. He throws it by people and you see other guys throwing 95 getting hit around.''

Danks said he has no idea what Buehrle will do after the season.

"It's one of those things where you weight your options when the time comes,'' Danks said. "I know he's not worried about it right now.''

Williams prefers Beckham's old swing

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It's no big secret what's holding Gordon Beckham back from being a productive piece in the White Sox lineup: The second baseman is chasing bad pitches, usually high or away.

"I wanted to break everything in the bat rack,'' Beckham said Friday about his 0-for-4 night in a 4-2 loss to Detroit the night before.

"I still have a lot of time. I have to find a way to help this team. We have a chance to win the division. This is not about me, it's about winning.''

Beckham, who took a .238 average in the series opener Friday against the Texas Rangers, was 3-for-24 in previous last seven games. He left four runners in scoring position Thursday, and couldn't get Brent Morel in from third with no outs when he grounded to third in the second inning Friday.

"My swings are great, my BP is good,'' Beckham said of his pregame preparation. "It's a matter of getting good pitches to hit and hitting them well instead of fouling them off -- and laying off bad pitches. It's frustrating. I had a chance to help my team win [Thursday] and couldn't do anything. But I can't feel sorry for myself.''

These are trying times for Beckham -- and pivotal ones at that. General manager Ken Williams said it's not too soon to say that Beckham is at a crossroads in his career.

"Because with his current approach I think they're going to continue to expose his weakness,'' Williams said

"I liked the swing coming out of the University of Georgia, the one that we saw when he first got here to the big leagues here where he was able to drive the ball and pound it into the right-center field gap. And any high fastball, he could get on top if it with his top hand. But again, as the general manager you sit back you have to respect the work that your coaches do and you have to respect the desire from the player as to what he thinks will work.

"It doesn't matter what I think. It's what he takes from that on-deck circle to the plate with the most confidence that's going to ultimately yield his failures or successes. I personally liked the swagger and the cock that he had of his wrists and the loading of his hands when he had the previous swing I spoke of.''

Sox-Tigers game moved to Sunday night

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The White Sox schedule on Labor Day weekend is getting crowded.

Sunday's game at Detroit on Sept. 4 was moved to 7:05 p.m. CST to accommodate ESPN2 for a Sunday night broadcast. The Sox have a day-night double-header the next day against the Twins in Minneapolis.

The day-night double-header is the result of a rained out game at Minnesota in June.

Humber goes on disabled list; Kinney called up from AAA

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Philip Humber, who was hit in the forehead by a ball off the bat of Kosuke Fukudome in the White Sox game against the Cleveland Indians on Thursday, was placed on the 15-day disabled list after being re-evaluated on Friday.

The Sox purchased the contract of right-hander Josh Kinney from AAA Charlotte to take Humber's place.

Kinney, 32, is 6-3 with a 2.77 ERA over 61 2/3 innings in a team-high 49 relief appearances. Kinney has pitched in 45 major-league games with St. Louis, going 1-0 with a 4.56 ERA for the Cardinals in 2006, 2008 and 2009.

Humber (8-8, 3.63) appeared to be OK after the liner hit him flush above his right eye and spoke with reporters after the game. He was taken out immediately for precautionary reasons. Initial tests checked out OK. The Sox described his injury Friday as a facial contusion.

Right-hander Zach Stewart, who came in for Humber in the second inning, is a possbile replacement in Wednesday's start at Anaheim for Humber.

"Of course, everyone was asking if I was OK,'' Humber said. "I told them I was good, I felt like I could still pitch and wanted to be out there. But at the same time, they got a job to do and take every precaution that there wasn't anything serious going on. I think we'll re-evaluate [Friday] and see where we're at. As of right now, I feel good. I feel like I just got a little pop knot on my forehead. Other than that, I feel very fortunate.''

Humber did not get a glove on the ball, and fell backward bent at his knees.

"I saw it, but a little late,'' he said. "I wasn't as quick as I thought. But I was very fortunate and one thing I would like to say is that my wife was here, so obviously upsetting for her. But she told me the fans were very supportive and had a lot of kind things to say to her, so I appreciate that."

"First you're kind of dazed, what just happened. But I wanted to make sure I got up, just in case we might get an out. But at the same time, I knew Kristan was in the stands and I didn't want her to think it's worse than what it was. That's what was on my mind."

Viciedo must get healthy before he can help Sox

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The White Sox were 1-for-10 with runners in scoring position in their losses to the Cleveland Indians on Wednesday and Thursday. They scored three runs total in the two losses after winning the first game of the series 7-6 in 14 innings.

If they are hoping for an offensive boost from AAA slugger Dayan Viciedo when teams are allowed to expand rosters on Sept. 1, they can only hope that Viciedo stays healthy before then. He was injured for the second time in a month's time on Wednesday night, attempting to make a diving catch.

Viciedo, 22, injured his right hand. X-rays were negative and he is day-to-day. He is batting .292 with 17 homers and 71 RBI.

Humber struck in forehead; leaves game

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White Sox right-hander Philip Humber was struck above the right eye with a ball off the bat of Kosuke Fukudome in the second inning of the Cleveland Indians' 4-2 win on Thursday night and was forced to leave the game.

Humber appeared to be OK, walking off on his own power. He was removed for precautionary reasons, and was alert and responsive. He will be evaluated on Friday.

Humber was replaced by Zach Stewart. The Sox led 1-0 on Paul Konerko's 28th homer in the third inning but Cleveland came back to win for the second straight night after the Sox won the first game of the series.

Indians teammates help Hannahan in pinch

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By The Associated Press

When Indians third baseman Jack Hannahan needed a lift, his teammates stepped up in a big way.

Hannahan's wife went into labor this month while the team was in Boston. The journeyman ballplayer was desperate to get back to Cleveland, but the next available flight wasn't until the next morning.

The Indians then pitched in to secure a private plane that got Hannahan home in time for the birth of his first child, John Jack Hannahan V.

"He needed to be there," pitcher Justin Masterson said before Wednesday night's game at the White Sox. "It's a team game. You have to help each other out on the field and off the field.

"It wasn't one guy. Every single person threw in to help out. It's pretty impressive."

Hannahan's wife had a difficult pregnancy. She was confined to bed rest after 24 weeks, so Hannahan spent his nights at the hospital after home games. John Jack Hannahan V weighed two pounds, 12 ounces when he was born at 3:11 a.m. on August 5.

"He's a little miracle," said Hannahan, who added that John is doing great and will remain in the hospital for another two months.

The Indians tried to keep the kind gesture quiet, but news trickled out in the past couple days, and Hannahan delivered a public thank you before Wednesday's game.

"It just tells you about this team that we have," Hannahan said. "That the guys would do that for me I think speaks volumes about the character of our team.

''I've played on four different big league teams and that just doesn't happen on any team. It takes a great group of guys to do that."

Deal made White Sox pen 'great,' says Oz

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Granted, the White Sox gave up a top-flight arm in their starting rotation when they unloaded Edwin Jackson along with Mark Teahen in a cost-cutting trade last month. Losing Jackson caused more than a few players to wince in the Sox clubhouse.

But adding right-hander Jason Frasor, the winning pitcher in the 14-inning marathon against the Indians on Tuesday night, arguably gives the Sox one of the best bullpens in baseball from top to bottom.

There is no more important commodity down the stretch and in the post-season than a strong pen.

"The acquisition of Frasor, that gives us a great bullpen,'' Sox manager Ozzie Guillen said before the White Sox lost to the Cleveland Indians 4-1 on Wednesday night. "We were good. Having Frasor there makes this thing better.''

Spot starter Zach Stewart, who came with Frasor from Toronto, is also there for depth. Stewart mopped up on Wednesday, pitching 1 2/3 scoreless innings in relief of Buehrle (10-6).

With lefties Chris Sale, Matt Thornton and Will Ohman and right-handers Sergio Santos, Jesse Crain and Frasor, the Sox have pitchers doing mop-up duty who would be setting up for other teams in one-run games.

"We have so many different options down there, it's amazing,'' Thornton said. "With the addition of Frasor to go with Sergio and Sale - who I think have the best right-handed and left-handed sliders in baseball -- it's been a lot fun to watch. There are so many options for our coaching staff.''

The bullpen owns a 2.50 ERA over its last 51 games, allowing 121 hits with 169 strikeouts over 151 1/3 innings in that span.

Jackson, by the way, is 2-1 with a 4.62 ERA in four starts with the St. Louis Cardinals, who acquired him from the Blue Jays. Teahen was one-for-eight, his only hit a homer, for Toronto.

Pierre single in 14th lifts White Sox to win

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This one was worth the wait.

Juan Pierre singled home Gordon Beckham from third base in the bottom of the 14th inning early Wednesday, giving the White Sox an 8-7 victory against the Cleveland Indians at U.S. Cellular Field.

Beckham doubled to right-center field with one out against Chad Durbin (2-2) and went to third on Brent Morel's infield single moved Beckham to third.

Cleveland's David Huff, the Indians' ninth pitcher of the game, came in to face Pierre, who lined a single into left field.

Pierre had three hits in the game, one of 22 for the Sox, including a home run in the fourth inning.

"That's what I was waiting for, those questions [about the homer],'' said Pierre, who has 16 in his career. "That's the celebration right there. I can't explain it. I just put a good swing on it and that one I wasn't sure. I saw [right fielder Shin-Soo] Choo go back and I was like 'Blow wind,' or something because it was pretty high.

"Now I can really enjoy it because you can't enjoy it after a loss. There aren't too many of them that come off my bat.''

The win put the White Sox above the .500 mark for the first time since April 15. They stayed within 3 1/2 games of first-place Detroit while dropping the Indians to three games back.

Jason Frasor (3-2) pitched a perfect 14th to earn the win. Matt Thornton and Jesse Crain each pitched two scoreless innings of relief for the Sox.

"The bullpen covered a lot of innings,'' said Frasor, who struck out two in a 1-2-3 inning. "It was a great time for my first 1-2-3 inning as a White Sox. The Indians can hit. The bullpen did a great job.''

The game lasted five hours, 21 minutes, and ended at 12:30 a.m. Wednesday.

"I drank an extra Red Bull,'' Frasor said. "I had an idea how it was going to play out.''

It was the Sox' ninth win in their last 11 games, and their 50-38 record since May 7 is the fourth-best mark in the AL. But general manager Ken Williams still isn't sold. He's like every other Sox fan who feels good about his team one day but not so good the next. He wants to feel great every day but can't bring himself around to it.

"Listen, I wish I did,'' Williams said before the game. "But I'm not going to tell you something that I don't believe. I don't have a good feel after 120 games. And it's just been inconsistent play. I'm still very optimistic. Again, if we start to click, even just a little bit, we can put together a heck of a run. But the fact of the matter is we haven't, so I can't assume it's going to happen.''

This was an up-and-down roller coaster of emotions for those among the 24,695 who stayed to the finish. The Sox had five triples, the most they've hit in a game since getting six in one in 1920.

"But how many of them scored?" asked manager Ozzie Guillen.

The answer was one. And, after Sergio Santos couldn't hold a one-run lead in the ninth, the Sox left runners in scoring position in their half of the ninth, 10th, 11th, 12th and 13th innings.

The Sox 11th was the worst of them. Alex Rios led off with a triple against Chris Perez and did not score after Alexei Ramirez grounded out to third, and Brent Lillibridge (intentionally walked) was doubled off first on Tyler Flowers' liner to third.

Rios' triple was the Sox fifth. Alejandro De Aza hit two RBI triples, Paul Konerko extended his hitting streak to 12 games with four hits including a double, Brent Morel had a career-high four hits, Ramirez tripled in a run, and Flowers had a double and triple as the Sox cranked out 22 hits.

Santos, suffering his first blown save since July 4 against Kansas City, allowed a one-out walk to pinch-hitter Ezequiel Carrera in the ninth, then watched a bloop single fall in front of center fielder Rios - a late defensive replacement - to put runners on the corners for the Indians. The tying run scored on a grounder to second baseman Beckham near the infield grass when Beckham couldn't glove it, settling for a force at second as Carrera scored the tying run.

"It's a big win,'' said Flowers, who became the full-time catcher with A.J. Pierzynski going on the disabled list Tuesday. "Santos had sort of a rough one but he didn't give up any hard hits. The bullpen really picked him up. Everybody participated and contributed and did their job.''

"All I can expect is the effort and intensity to be there every day,'' Williams said. "We've got 42 games left. It's not hard to keep your intensity level up with 42 games. That's what I expect and hopefully we can get on a roll and some guys can get some confidence back maybe that they haven't had thus far.''

What you see in the Sox right now is what you get. Williams said he doesn't expect to make any waiver deals as the Tigers did with outfielder Delmon Young. He doesn't see troubled Cub Carlos Zambrano "as a fit" for the Sox, either.

"I've made no secret about it for quite a while that we are limited from a payroll standpoint at this point and time,'' said Williams, who trimmed payroll by dealing away Edwin Jackson at the deadline while adding to his bullpen by getting Frasor. "We haven't earned our fans' patronage enough to put us in that position and that's nobody's fault except our own fault. Anything that would come across right now, even if it were appealing from a talent standpoint, we are not in a position to be able to do it. Again, that's our fault. That's nobody's fault, except mine, my staff's and the people in uniform.''

Williams said he is optimistic before every game.

"I only get surprised at the end of the game where it's again, we haven't supported our pitching staff,'' he said. "That's my surprise. I keep waiting for it to come, waiting for it to happen.''

Sox starter Gavin Floyd, who had nine strikeouts, couldn't get out of the sixth and left with no chance to win after Will Ohman walked two in relief, including Jason Donald with the bases loaded to make it 5-5. It was one of eight walks by Sox pitchers, who also struck out 19 Indians.

White Sox' Williams not expected to deal

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Don't expect the White Sox to add to their payroll as they attempt to chase down the Detroit Tigers and Cleveland Indians in the American League Central.

"I've made no secret about it for quite a while that we are limited from a payroll standpoint at this point and time,'' Sox general manager Ken Williams said before the Sox played the Indians at U.S. Cellular Field on Tuesday night. "We haven't earned our fans' patronage enough to put us in that position and that's nobody's fault except our own.''

The Indians traded for starting pitcher Ubaldo Jimenez before the trade deadline. The Tigers added outfielder Delmon Young after it to beef up their lineup. The Sox trimmed some payroll before the trade deadline by trading Edwin Jackson, although that deal beefed up the Sox' bullpen with the addition of Jason Frasor.

"Anything that would come across right now, even if it were appealing from a talent standpoint, we are not in a position to be able to do it,'' Williams said. "Again, that's our fault. That's nobody's fault, except me, my staff and the people in uniform.''

White Sox place Pierzynski on DL

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The White Sox placed A.J. Pierzynski on the disabled list on Tuesday with a fractured left wrist, retroactive to Aug. 13.

The Sox' left-handed hitting catcher is batting .296 with six homers and 39 RBI. It is the first time in the 34-year-old Pierzynski's career that he is on the DL.

The Sox purchased the contract of Donny Lucy from AAA Charlotte. Lucy, 28, is batting .158 with four homers for AAA Charlotte. He is 8-for-30 with one homer in career major league games.

Pierzynski sufferend the injury last Friday when he was hit by a pitch from Royals lefty Bruce Chen.

Pierzynski leads American League catchers in average, games played (103) and innings caught (862 1/3). Tyler Flowers, who has started in Pierzynski's place, is expected to carry most of the load in Pierzynski's absence.

The Sox open a three-game series with the Cleveland Indians tonight at U.S. Cellular Field.

"That's the biggest thing is knowing where we're at and we have one of the teams we're chasing in here for a big three-game series,'' Pierzynski said. "That's the hardest part is knowing that. I can't really do anything to help. I can just be here for support and try to help them. Help Flowers and Lucy out as far as catching and that kind of stuff. Other than that, it just stinks you have to sit here and you can't really go out and hit or catch or do anything to help the team."

"Yeah, obviously you never want to go on the DL,'' Pierzynski said. "I've never been on the DL, so I'm obviously upset, angry and frustrated, but at the same time there's nothing I can do. It wasn't like I did something or like I punched something or kicked something or did something stupid, it just happens. An inch here, an inch there, I'm OK. It just hit me in the right spot and hopefully I can come back and be back in 15 days."

Santos sets major-league record

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BALTIMORE -- Sergio Santos set a major-league record with his 25th straight scoreless appearances on the road to start a season, breaking Mariano Rivera's mark set in 2005.

Santos pitched a perfect ninth inning for his 25th save to preserve a 6-3 victory. Mark Buehrle (10-5) got the win.

"I didn't know there was a record,'' Santos said. "I knew I hadn't given up a run at all on the road. But it's one of those things that just kind of happened. It just so happens I was pitching pretty good and it just so happened on the road."

Before the game, Santos said there was no rhyme or reason for the streak on the road, or the team's better record away from home.

"Lucky and fortunate it's coming together,'' said the first-year closer. "Throwing strikes, which is my main goal and I can live with what happens if I'm throwing strikes."

Buehrle gets 10th win as White Sox tip O's

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BALTIMORE -- After serving up the 100th career homer of Nick Markakis' career in the third inning, Mark Buehrle buckled down and led the White Sox to a 6-3 victory against the Baltimore Orioles on Thursday night.

The Sox took three of four from the O's and finished their road trip with a 6-1 record going into a nine-game homestand that begins on Friday night.

After Markakis' homer, Buehrle (10-5) allowed five hits. His key inning was the fifth, when he left runners on second and third by striking out Markakis.

Opening the game with five straight hits against Chris Tillman (3-5), including a two-run homer by Alexei Ramirez that was followed with consecutive doubles by Paul Konerko (2-for-4), Carlos Quentin (1-for-5) and A.J. Pierzynski (3-for-5), the Sox gave Buehrle a 4-0 lead before he threw his first pitch.

Buehrle pitched eight innings. He struck out six and walked none. Sergio Santos pitched a perfect ninth for his 25th save.

White Sox' Konerko toughing it out

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BALTIMORE - It's hard to know what's a bigger pain to Paul Konerko: The discomfort in his calf that causes him to hobble around the bases or answering questions about it.

Asked if it's the toughest thing he's ever played through, Konerko said, "If it is I don't even want to go into it. Does it really matter? Listen, I'm playing. If there is anything else to report, I'll let you know. That's all I got for you.''

Konerko, the team captain, is leading by example. The Sox desperately need his bat as they try to chase down the Detroit Tigers and Cleveland Indians down the stretch.

"It's impressive,'' teammate A.J. Pierzynski said. "I know how much pain he's in because we talk about it a lot. We all know that. It would be nice if he was healthy so he could play first base. But he's doing whatever he can now to help us win games. He doesn't have to be out there but he is. It's something you admire.''

Almost everyone is playing through some physical issue at this time of year, but Konerko's merits an excused absence. It didn't prevent him from going 2-for-4 with two doubles and a run scored on Thursday night.

"Everyone -- the manager, coaches, players, fans, front office people -- should tip their hat to him,'' manager Ozzie Guillen said. "He's playing with a lot of pain. It's very uncomfortable to see him running.''

Konerko labored to second with a stand-up double in the first inning, and then to home on a double by Carlos Quentin. As Guillen said, it's not a comfortable sight.

"He wants to play and help us and that's why Konerko is a very special guy in this organization,'' Guillen said.

Konerko's teammates have ribbed him about it, drawing comparisons to former Tiger and current Diamondbacks manager Kirk Gibson, who famously hit a World Series homer on one good leg.

"A couple of guys give him trouble, calling him 'Gibby,' '' said Thursday night's winning pitcher, Mark Buehrle. "Every time he jogs into second base we're looking for the fist pump. For him, it's got to be killing him. He's out there giving his all. He's not the fastest guy any way, and with this injury it makes him even slower. But he's giving it everything he's got.''

Konerko doesn't want to hear that he's anything special. He'd tell you he's just doing what he gets paid to do. Pierzynski admires it, while knowing it comes with the territory.

"In this game, you're going to play hurt. It's just the way it is,'' Pierzynski said. "This time of year, they call it the dog days. We've played 110-120 games, you're beat up and tired and you find a way to get through it. Paulie's done that, and we have a lot of guys who are playing through stuff.''

Konerko hiked his average to .306. He is batting .324 with 16 homers and 43 RBI in his last 58 games.

Bautista says White Sox threatened him

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BALTIMORE - The White Sox were dragged into a Toronto Blue Jays controversy about sign-stealing on Wednesday when Jays slugger Jose Bautista told reporters in Toronto that an un-named Sox relief pitcher threatened him while accusing the Jays of stealing signs last season.

"He yelled at me and said, 'We know what you and your teammates are doing. ... Keep it up and someone is going to get hurt," Bautista told the Toronto Sun. "Getting hit is one thing, telling someone you're going to hit them is something else. What if someone gets hit in the head?"

Bautista wouldn't elaborate on who the player was but it appears to be a current or former Sox reliever.

Four unnamed players in an ESPN The Magazine story said they had seen somebody wearing a white shirt in the stands in Toronto signaling off-speed pitches to Jays hitters. The tip-offs reportedly came from one or more persons in the stands in center field at Rogers Centre.

According to the story, there was a confrontation between an opposing team's bullpen and Bautista while he was playing right field. It appears as though it was a White Sox reliever.

"We know what you're doing," the player said. "If you do it again, I'm going to hit you in the [expletive] head."

Bautista denied that the Jays were cheating.

"Yes, they've accused the Jays since last year,'' Sox manager Ozzie Guillen said Wednesday. "People talk about it. Well, if they're stealing signs, they should be in first place. That's my opinion. It's not easy to do that, you have to be right on time.

"But if they accuse them, it's for a reason. It has to be for a reason.''

Of the accusations, "This is bogus, this is fictitious, this is made up."

Jays general manager Alex Anthopoulos denied in a press conference Wednesday that his team is stealing pitches.

"This whole thing is stupid. It's unbelievable that we're sitting here to even talk about this," Anthopoulos said. "There's zero truth to this."

When the Sox played the Jays in Toronto on May 29 this season, Bautista and Sox starter John Danks exchanged heated words on the field after Bautista slammed his bat to the turf when he popped out. Danks felt like Bautista was showing him up.

Local-boy Floyd gets 10th win as White Sox extend streak

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BALTIMORE -- Right-hander Gavin Floyd had about 50 friends and relatives in attendance to watch him collect his 10th victory of the season in the White Sox' 4-3 win against the Orioles on Tuesday night.

Floyd (10-10), who is from Annapolis, Md., is 3-0 with a 2.28 ERA at Camden Yards. This wasn't one of his better starts with three runs allowed on seven hits but it was a quality effort that got the job done.

"I started out good and then they adjusted to what I was doing,'' said Floyd, who got dinged for three runs in the fifth inning. "I just had to make better pitches.''

Floyd twisted his right ankle in the seventh inning but said he was OK to pitch. But manager Ozzie Guillen went to his bullpen, anyway, and Floyd was done after allowing seven hits and one walk while striking out four.

The pen preserved the victory that brought the Sox to within a game of .500 and extended their win streak to five.

" Our bullpen has been pitching really well,'' Floyd said. "We've all thought our bullpen can do what they are doing now from the beginning. We have a really good bullpen, and I feel like our starters are really good too. And our lineup.

"Everything is hopefully coming together and go on a little run here.''

White Sox win seventh straight on road

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BALTIMORE - White Sox fans are edgy to begin with. Call it a South Side thing.

Add to it their disappointment in an underachieving team and they've gone from edgy to grumpy, which explains the boos and the sometimes unfriendly atmosphere at U.S. Cellular Field. Does that also explain why the Sox are the only team in the American League with a winning record on the road and a losing mark at home?

"I talked about that subject for five minutes the other day and did not have a good answer to that,'' second baseman Gordon Beckham. "You can make assumptions. Maybe guys feel a little more pressure in Chicago - maybe some boos and that kind of stuff. But there's no rhyme or reason.''

The Sox are 24-32 at home, where they had played two fewer games through Monday and scored 34 fewer runs while allowing 17 more earned runs. They beat the Orioles 4-3 for their seventh straight win on the road and 16th in their last 21 games.

Carlos Quentin may be the single-most important reason for the discrepancy. He hit his 17th home run on the road in the second inning against the Orioles on Tuesday and was batting .302 with 48 RBI on the road. He's hitting .223 with seven homers, 23 RBI at home.

"I have no idea why we play better on the road,'' 44-year-old veteran Omar Vizquel said.''Maybe the wife has something to do with it [smiling]. Chicago is a great ballpark to hit and you would think we'd have an advantage because of the way the ball travels.''

Vizquel said it has nothing to do with the crowd "because the crowd is not going to be on your side on the road. Maybe the guys concentrate better on the road.''

Sox fans have booed Adam Dunn and Alex Rios hard this season. Brent Lillibridge echoes the view of most players, that few embrace that side of the fan base but most understand it.

"I understand their frustration because this team was built defensively and offensively to be one of the best in the league,'' Lillibridge said. "The fans had high hopes and are frustrated because they see how good we could be. We play this game to win.

"To be hated one day and loved the next its part of the job we have. It goes with being on TV and being exposed and everyone seeing our faults.''

Brent Morel homered and drove in another run with a single.

Pierzynski's three RBI power White Sox

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BALTIMORE -- A.J. Pierzynski's home run in the second inning, which gave the White Sox a 1-0 lead against the Orioles in their 7-6 victory at Camden Yards on Monday, snapped an 0-for-12 streak for the Sox catcher.

Nothing like a little extra time in the batting cage to iron things out. Pierzynski said hitting coaches Greg Walker and Mike Gellinger helped him make a couple of minor adjustments and they obviously clicked. He added an RBI single in the sixth and a sacrifice fly in the eighth that tied the score at 7-7.

"It's nice to score those runs late, in the seventh, eighth or ninth,'' said Pierzynski. "It's hard to do but when it does happen it's fun.''

Pierzynski, who raised his average to .284 and his RBI total to 37, has a knack for hitting with two strikes. The homer was his fifth with an 0-2 count this year. He has six homers.

Dunn stays in lineup, batting seventh

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BALTIMORE -- Adam Dunn and Ozzie Guillen hadn't talked about the struggling slugger's off-season routine, a subject Guillen brought up over the weekend.

"I've done the same workout with the same people,'' Dunn said of his off-season fitness work. "But as far as baseball stuff, I'll probably, will definitely hit this off-season. Just do what I can to not let this happen again, obviously."

Dunn has been up-front and as open as he can be with media about his season to forget, his first in the American League. But the subject wears him out as much as wears out White Sox fans. He didn't directly face a group of reporters at his locker before Monday's game as he answered questions, which was unusual.

'It's hard not to get frustrated, but I've tried to do the best that I could to now show frustration, but sometimes it's pretty hard not to," Dunn said.

Guillen, who suggested Dunn consider a more intense off-season routine - even though his old way has always worked - started Dunn at first base on Monday night after saying he might give him an extended break. But the Sox manager moved him down to seventh in the lineup.

"I'm going to let him go out there and play and see if he can come out of the slump,'' said Guillen, who may rest Dunn on Tuesday night against lefty Jo-Jo Reyes. "I put him down hoping he will relax a little bit more and won't have the pressure to go out there and do it. It's another thing we try to help him a little bit to swing the bat better.''

The White Sox won their fourth consecutive game Monday, defeating the Orioles 7-6. Dunn drove in the second run of a four-run second inning with an opposite field line single. He also grounded out twice and walked.

Guillen fires back at critics

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It came as no surprise that slumping Alex Rios was out of the lineup when the Sox hosted the New York Yankees on Thursday night. What surprised manager Ozzie Guillen was the uproar over Rios playing as much as he has after general manager Ken Williams gave him the green light to bench him despite his huge salary.

After Alejandro De Aza hit a home run in his first at-bat after being brought up from AAA Charlotte, some figured they had seen the last of Rios. But Guillen wasn't about to subject the left-handed hitting De Aza to the three straight left-handers the Sox faced. De Aza played right field Wednesday basically because Paul Konerko, who returned from a calf injury Thursday, was out of the lineup.

"Let me explain to the idiots out there, the genius,'' Guillen said. "They say I no bench Rios, but the only player I bench because he no hustle, it was Rios, for two days, OK?

"Tell these people out there, they think they know baseball more than I do, then send me the lineup that was better without Rios in the lineup. Is Rios not playing well? Of course he's not, he's brutal everywhere.''

But he was still Guillen's best option in center field, Guillen said.

Guillen, pointing out that he benched Rios this season for not hustling, also strongly objected to the notion that he favors Latino players.

"You know how many Latino players I get rid of here?''

"A lot" was the answer.

"Thank you, okay! Every time the people talk about it ... it's a bunch of crap.''

White Sox' Santos in awe of Yankees' Rivera

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Sergio Santos, a budding closer at the time, sought out Mariano Rivera when the Sox were in New York in late April. He wanted to pick the brain of the best there ever was and had a conversation he'll never forget.

"It's amazing,'' Santos said of Rivera's nine pitch - all for strikes - ninth inning on Monday night. "The first thing you notice is how loud the cheers were he got at a visiting stadium. That's the respect he's earned.

"His sustained success is the crazy thing about it. To have that kind of consistency over the years is remarkable.''

With 1,021 appearances, Rivera went into the Yankees game at U.S. Cellular Field on Tuesday night needing one more to tie Jose Mesa and Lee Smith for 10th place on baseball's all-time games pitched list. Santos' next appearance will be his 100th.

When the two closers spoke in April, Rivera emphasized the importance of focusing on each pitch, not letting the mind wander, throwing strikes and attacking hitters.

"That's a conversation I still go through in my head,'' Santos said. "To see him go out and do what he said is pretty fun.

Santos would welcome another talk. He got his first two saves of the season in New York, and has added 20 since then.

Santos' success goes hand in hand "with experience, not only with closing but just pitching,'' he said. "Getting put in different situations, having different feelings and dealing with that. Every inning is a new experience and you gain something each time to make you better.''

White Sox' Konerko out of starting lineup vs. Yankees

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The White Sox will take on the New York Yankees and left-hander CC Sabathia without their best hitter on Monday night. There's a very good chance he won't be in the lineup Tuesday, either.

Paul Konerko, who was hit near his left knee by a pitch from Red Sox lefty Andrew Miller and sustained a bruised left calf on Sunday, is not in the starting lineup as the Sox continue an important homestand tonight with a four-game series against New York at U.S. Cellular Field.

"I don't expect PK play tomorrow, either,'' manager Ozzie Guillen said before Monday's game. "That's a manager's expectation. This kid got hit pretty good. It's very sore right now. We're not going to see the best and most consistent one. Those guys in the lineup have to step it up a notch until he comes back.''

Adam Dunn, who has three hits against lefties this season, will play first base on Monday. Carlos Quentin slides into Dunn's customary designed hitter spot while Brent Lillibridge will play right field.

"With the lineup we have, the expectation is we've been waiting for a long time,'' Guillen said. "We got hot maybe for a few games. Hopefully with a couple months left those guys get hot together and we start scoring some runs.''

The Sox rank eighth in the American League with 100 home runs. Since the All-Star break, they have 11, which ranks 12th. The Sox' 100 homers are their fewest total through July since the strike-shortened 1995 season when they hit 90 and fewest in a full season since 1992 (59). The Sox' 18 home runs in July is their fewest since they hit 17 in '92.

The Sox, who have lost two straight, are 8-6 since the All-Star break and 3-3 on the current homestand. Their 41-32 (.562) record since May 7 is the fourth-best mark in the American League behind Boston (52-22), New York (46-30) and Texas (44-32).

The Yankees are coming off a 10-game, 10-day homestand in which they were 7-3 and won all three series against Oakland (2-1), Seattle (2-1) and Baltimore (3-1).

Sabathia, who is 38-10 in his career in August, struck out a career-high 14 while allowing one run over seven innings against Seattle in his last outing. He retired the first 19 batters he faced.

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This page is an archive of entries from August 2011 listed from newest to oldest.

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