Abreu leads charge as Rodon stifles Tribe
CHICAGO -- Lefty Carlos Rodon turned in another quality start, slugger Jose Abreu launched a home run and collected three hits, and the White Sox picked up a 7-4 victory over the Indians on Tuesday night at U.S. Cellular Field.
Rodon (7-6) held Cleveland to one run over seven innings, ending with eight strikeouts and one walk in the win. The rookie left-hander has now pieced together six straight quality starts, turning in a 1.76 ERA in that recent stretch.
"Tonight it was just a nice performance," said White Sox manager Robin Ventura. "Any time he got in trouble, he seemed to find an extra gear and throw strikes and throw tough pitches."
Abreu powered the South Siders' with a three-hit showing that left him a triple shy of a cycle. The White Sox first baseman belted a solo homer in the third (his 26th shot of the season), singled home a run in the fifth and doubled in the seventh. Rob Brantly came through with a three-run homer in the second inning and Trayce Thompson added a two-run single in the seventh.
Indians starter Carlos Carrasco (12-10), who was activated from the disabled list prior to the game, took the loss after giving up four runs on four hits in only 2 2/3 innings. Michael Brantley (two-run homer in the eighth) and Jose Ramirez (pinch-hit solo shot in the ninth) homered for the Tribe.
"I felt great today," Carrasco said. "I think I felt a little bit down in the last inning. It was just kind of like the ball was running away a little bit, but I feel fine."
The Indians dropped a game in the American League Wild Card chase, falling to six back of the Rangers, who won, 9-6, in Seattle. The White Sox remained seven behind Texas, with 25 games remaining for all three clubs.
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
Making an impact: It had been nearly two years since Brantly's last hit in the Majors, but he delivered in a big way with his home run in the second. With two runners on, Brantly took the first pitch he saw to right field for his first hit since Sept. 12, 2013, with Miami. Since being called up on Sept. 1, the 26-year-old has made just three starts, but he hopes to impress with a chance to stay up next year.
"He's just swinging a good bat," Ventura said. "It's nice to get a look at him. It's a different look for us to have a lefty in there from behind the plate, but he's done a nice job the last two times he's caught. When he's gone out there, he's swung the bat pretty good and the catching and receiving has been nice."
Only 58 for No. 59: Given that he was starting for the first time since Aug. 21, Carrasco was working with a pitch limit. After the big right-hander uncharacteristically gave up a pair of homers and issued three walks, Carrasco was pulled after throwing just 58 pitches (36 strikes). He was on the 15-day DL due to inflammation in his right shoulder.
"I thought he was working hard and they had a bunch of lefties or switch-hitters coming up," Indians manager Terry Francona said. "I thought, rather than let him work really hard to get through it, let's let him get his feet wet like he did tonight and he'll be good to go his next outing." More >
Missed opportunity: Cleveland loaded the bases against Rodon in the second inning behind a pair of singles (Carlos Santana and Chris Johnson) and a fielding error by third baseman Mike Olt that allowed Michael Martinez to reach safely. The White Sox lefty did not let the Tribe get any further, inducing an inning-ending groundout off the bat of Jason Kipnis. Cleveland went 2-for-18 vs. Rodon after loading the bases in the second.
"As soon as I looked over my left shoulder I thought that ball was getting through there and all of the sudden I see [second baseman Carlos Sanchez] picking up that play and making it look easy," Rodon said. "Hats off to him. Thank god he was there." More >
A little insurance: The White Sox gave themselves more room to work in the seventh inning behind Thompson's two-run single. Alexei Ramirez and Abreu opened the inning with back-to-back hits and scored on the hit from Thompson, who was called out attempting to leg out a double. Thompson is now hitting .400 with a .449 on-base percentage and 10 RBIs in 22 games this season since he was called up in August.
"Even when he was in a hitter's count or a 3-2 he'd say, 'I want the slider,' and put it right where he wanted it. It was great. I saw all three today. I learned all three. There's a hard one, it's like a cutter. There's one where he wants to throw it for a strike and there's his putaway one, that one's pretty dirty." -- Brantly, on catching Rodon
HAVE YOU EVER SEEN THE RAIN?
First pitch was delayed one hour and four minutes from it's scheduled 7:10 p.m. CT start because of thunderstorms.
UPON FURTHER REVIEW
With two outs in the bottom of the sixth, Sanchez was ruled safe on a steal of second base. Francona challenged the call by second-base umpire Quinn Wolcott, and had the ruling overturned. Replays showed second baseman Kipnis receiving the throw from catcher Yan Gomes and applying the tag on Sanchez just before the runner's hand touched the base. The result was an inning-ending caught stealing, marking the 16th runner nabbed this year by Gomes.
Indians: The Tribe will hand the ball to right-hander Josh Tomlin (4-1, 2.55 ERA) for the finale of the three-game set against the White Sox at 8:10 p.m. ET on Wednesday at U.S. Cellular Field. On Friday in Detroit, Tomlin held the Tigers to one run on four hits in a complete-game effort. He has limited batters to a .173 average through five outings this year.
White Sox: Jeff Samardzija (9-11, 4.87) takes the mound for the series finale on Wednesday night. The right-hander picked up his first win since July 28 his last time out, but he has allowed fewer than four runs only once in his last eight outings. First pitch from U.S. Cellular Field is scheduled for 7:10 p.m. CT.
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