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White Sox hold off Rockies with homer in ninth

MLB.com

DENVER -- Tim Anderson spoiled the Rockies' hopes for a comeback, as the 24-year-old shortstop crushed a go-ahead solo home run in the ninth to give the White Sox a 5-4 win over the Rockies at Coors Field on Saturday night. Anderson's homer was the second-longest of his career at 444 feet; he hit his longest in Friday's opener.

Greg Holland, the Rockies' All-Star closer who leads MLB with 28 saves, came in to a 4-4 game shortly after Gerardo Parra hit a sacrifice fly in the eighth to cap off the Rockies' rally. Anderson led off the frame by taking Holland deep, going to nearly the same spot he went to in center on Friday night -- a homer that went a Statcast-projected 451 feet -- to give the White Sox the lead again before David Robertson closed it out for his 13th save.

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DENVER -- Tim Anderson spoiled the Rockies' hopes for a comeback, as the 24-year-old shortstop crushed a go-ahead solo home run in the ninth to give the White Sox a 5-4 win over the Rockies at Coors Field on Saturday night. Anderson's homer was the second-longest of his career at 444 feet; he hit his longest in Friday's opener.

Greg Holland, the Rockies' All-Star closer who leads MLB with 28 saves, came in to a 4-4 game shortly after Gerardo Parra hit a sacrifice fly in the eighth to cap off the Rockies' rally. Anderson led off the frame by taking Holland deep, going to nearly the same spot he went to in center on Friday night -- a homer that went a Statcast-projected 451 feet -- to give the White Sox the lead again before David Robertson closed it out for his 13th save.

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Rare miscue for reliable Holland

"I never got off the heater," Anderson said of the homer off Holland. "I had a feeling he was going to try to challenge me with a heater in. They had been kind of coming in all game, so I just never got off the heater."

Video: CWS@COL: Roberston fans CarGo to notch 13th save

Jose Quintana, who's received the 10th-lowest average run support in the American League at 4.17, wasn't his dominant self of seasons past, but was able to keep the Rockies in check, giving up three runs in 5 1/3 innings.

Chicago scored three runs in the first inning off of Rockies starter Jeff Hoffman. Colorado has only won two games this season after trailing by three or more runs.

"Jeff hung in there. Wasn't at his best, but I really liked the fact that he hung in there and went seven innings without really having his best stuff and maybe his best command," Rockies manager Bud Black said. "I told him after the game I thought his last 30 pitches were his best out of the 90-plus."

Video: CWS@COL: Hoffman freezes Engel with breaking ball

MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
Rey of sunshine: Things had been looking bleak for the Rockies in the late innings, as they couldn't seem to figure out Quintana or the White Sox bullpen. But Mark Reynolds led off the eighth with a triple that rolled away from right fielder Alen Hanson. It was Reynolds' first triple in exactly two years, with his last three-bagger coming July 8, 2015, as a Cardinal. Additionally, Reynolds' average sprint speed per Statcast™ is 25.9 feet per second (the average MLB sprint speed is 27 feet per second). On tonight's triple, he was clocked at 26.6 feet per second. 

Video: CWS@COL: Reynolds hits triple to lead off bottom 8th

Defensive star in the making: Adam Engel's play in center field has been impressive for the White Sox since he made his Major League debut on May 27. He showed off his speed and range with Chicago up, 4-2, in the fifth inning, taking away extra bases from Tony Wolters by traveling 85 feet in 4.7 seconds for a four-star catch, according to Statcast™. The ball was his second four-star catch of the night, with his running catch on DJ LeMahieu's liner in the first inning having a catch probability of 49 percent; the Wolters ball had a 36 percent catch probability. Since he made his debut, Engel is the only White Sox outfielder with a catch that was awarded a three-star rating or higher by Statcast™. He now has three.

Video: CWS@COL: Engel makes two four-star grabs in Colorado

QUOTABLE
"I don't think about that right now. I'm focusing on doing my job. The first half has ended for me now and I'm focused on the second half. Try to do a better job and recover my body. I know that the trades are around me but that's part of the game. I don't have control in that. I just have control on throwing the ball well." -- Quintana, on the possibility that this was his last start with Chicago

SOUND SMART WITH YOUR FRIENDS
The White Sox feasted on extra-base hits early on, as Jose Abreu, Yolmer Sanchez and Willy Garcia combined to knock three triples in the first four innings of the game. It marked the first time Chicago recorded at least three triples in a game since recording five at home against Cleveland on Aug. 16, 2011.

Video: CWS@COL: Sanchez plates two with a triple to center

Quintana became the first White Sox pitcher to record 10 or more strikeouts and pick up an RBI since Bart Johnson on Sept. 17, 1971.

"Really excited," Quintana said of his fourth-inning sacrifice fly that made it 4-2. "My first RBI. I try to get contact first. It was really good. The guy throws hard. It was good, it was fun." More >

Video: CWS@COL: Watch Quintana fan 10 Rockies in 10 seconds

INTENTIONALLY SHREWD
The Rockies knocked Quintana out in the sixth following an RBI double by Parra and had a chance for more against Anthony Swarzak. The White Sox reliever has been adept at holding inherited runners, and proved capable again. Swarzak struck out Trevor Story with two fastballs on the black and, after Raimel Tapia was intentionally walked to load the bases, Swarzak induced a weak groundout from Wolters to end the inning. Swarzak has not allowed an earned run since June 18 and has stranded 19-of-26 inherited runners this season.

"Last year, I remember throwing [Story] some good sliders and him taking me to right field on them," Swarzak said of striking out Story. "I knew I wasn't going to let him get to me again, so in that at-bat I wanted to just stay hard on him. I executed down and away, kind of locked him up."

Video: CWS@COL: Swarzak pitches out of trouble in the 6th

"That was a tough one. Would've been nice late in the game," Black said. "We got to Quintana, they made a pitching change, we sorta had the momentum back on our side. That's a tough one."

EJECTED
With one out in the bottom of the ninth, Charlie Blackmon struck out looking and erupted in anger. Plate umpire Sam Holbrook rung Blackmon up on a slider on the outside part of the plate, and Blackmon immediately objected. Holbrook ejected him after a few words, and Blackmon spiked his helmet and bat on the ground. Black came out to defend his player and was ejected as well.

Video: CWS@COL: Blackmon gets ejected following strikeout

WHAT'S NEXT
White Sox: Carlos Rodon (1-1, 1.59 ERA) takes the White Sox into the All-Star break in the last of a three-game set Sunday afternoon. He's fresh off his first win of the season after missing most of the first three months with left biceps bursitis. First pitch is scheduled for 2:10 p.m. CT.

Rockies: LHP Kyle Freeland (8-7, 4.09) closes out the Interleague series for the Rockies on Sunday at 1:10 p.m. MT. Freeland has already made three Interleague starts in his young career, winning all three with a 2.95 ERA. But Freeland's coming off one of his worst outings this season, giving up five runs in 5 1/3 innings vs. the Reds last Tuesday.

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Fabian Ardaya is a reporter for MLB.com based in Chicago.

Max Gelman is a reporter for MLB.com based in Denver.

Jeff Hoffman, Jose Quintana