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Frazier happy he helped start 8th-inning rally

MLB.com @scottmerkin

KANSAS CITY -- Todd Frazier had a little extra motivation when facing Kelvin Herrera in the eighth inning of an eventual 7-4 White Sox victory over the Royals on Friday night at Kauffman Stadium.

That motivation came from a 97 mph Herrera fastball that came high and tight on Frazier in the first pitch of his one-out at-bat. It didn't take long for Frazier to express his displeasure, glaring at the mound and yelling at Herrera, with catcher Salvador Perez playing peacemaker to avoid any potential escalation.

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KANSAS CITY -- Todd Frazier had a little extra motivation when facing Kelvin Herrera in the eighth inning of an eventual 7-4 White Sox victory over the Royals on Friday night at Kauffman Stadium.

That motivation came from a 97 mph Herrera fastball that came high and tight on Frazier in the first pitch of his one-out at-bat. It didn't take long for Frazier to express his displeasure, glaring at the mound and yelling at Herrera, with catcher Salvador Perez playing peacemaker to avoid any potential escalation.

Full Game Coverage

"I'm hitting pretty well off of him. You never know," Frazier said. "Whenever you get a ball thrown up in that area, you second guess what's going on. I was frustrated, a little upset. Had the right to be.

"But it's over, so that's just the way it goes. You won't forget about it. It's something that just happened."

Frazier was 2-for-2 against Herrera entering the eighth inning, including a three-run homer in the 10th on a similar first-pitch 97-mph fastball to beat the hard-throwing right-hander and the Royals on Aug. 9. He made it 3-for-3 in Friday's at-bat with a double down the left-field line, and while Frazier's angry response probably didn't rattle the veteran Herrera, it certainly seemed to spark the White Sox and change the inning's scope.

Alex Avila followed with a run-scoring single, marking the catcher's first hit off of Herrera in 12 career at-bats. Avisail Garcia worked an eight-pitch walk and Carlos Sanchez, who was 1-for-6 previously against Herrera, connected for what turned out to be the game-winning three-run homer lofted out to right.

Video: CWS@KC: Sanchez launches a go-ahead three-run jack

Getting to Herrera after that high-and-inside first pitch brought a little extra satisfaction for Frazier.

"Definitely a little more locked in," Frazier said. "It's like that old saying: don't wake a sleeping dog kind of thing. Bottom line, I wanted to do even that much better against him and kickstarted that inning. It felt pretty good.

"There's nothing better, to be honest with you. That's it. When you kind of get your adrenaline going a little bit, got the dugout going a little bit, you changed the whole momentum of the game. I think it changed the whole momentum: get the double, big hit by Avila, the walk and the big one from Sanchez came. Glad I kickstarted that inning and we got the win."

Friday's comeback, coming after the White Sox took three out of four from the American League Central-leading Indians, raised the South Siders' ledger to 9-6 in September. They are trying to lock up a second winning month this season, after posting a 17-8 mark in April.

"We talked about it before this month," Frazier said. "You want to go into this month positive and build up for next year. It's nice to see and nice to see Chris Sale get that complete game and he's been doing it all year basically. It's good for him, kudos to him and for our guys for coming up big in that late inning."

Scott Merkin has covered the White Sox for MLB.com since 2003. Read his blog, Merk's Works, follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin, on Facebook and listen to his podcast.

 

Chicago White Sox, Todd Frazier