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Frazier's extra work starting to pay off at plate

Special to MLB.com

ST. PETERSBURG -- Thanks to a 3-for-4 effort against the Rays on Thursday, White Sox slugger Todd Frazier pushed his batting average to above .200 for the first time since May 20. His two-run homer in the top of the eighth inning helped bring the White Sox to within one run before falling, 7-5, in the series finale.

"We fought our way back. We even had a chance to tie it and win it," Frazier said. "True grit. That's how we've been playing."

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ST. PETERSBURG -- Thanks to a 3-for-4 effort against the Rays on Thursday, White Sox slugger Todd Frazier pushed his batting average to above .200 for the first time since May 20. His two-run homer in the top of the eighth inning helped bring the White Sox to within one run before falling, 7-5, in the series finale.

"We fought our way back. We even had a chance to tie it and win it," Frazier said. "True grit. That's how we've been playing."

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Frazier turned on a 99.3-mph fastball from Rays reliever Ryne Stanek and sent it down the left-field line where it hit halfway up the foul pole. According to Statcast™, the barreled ball traveled 392 feet and had an exit velocity of 104.1 mph.

It was Frazier's 10th home run of the season, and third in the last four games. He also singled in the fifth and sixth innings off of Rays starter Jake Odorizzi.

"I think Todd is starting to feel it a little bit," White Sox manager Rick Renteria said. "It's been coming along for probably a week or so. He's been working very hard with his routines, and has been doing a few things to get him more comfortable at the plate. We're happy to see that it's starting to pay some dividends."

One of Frazier's extracurricular activities of late has been standing in the batter's box during the pitchers' bullpen sessions in order to see more pitches at game speed.

Frazier is batting .444 (8-for-18) over the past seven games, helping his batting average to jump 27 points to .206. His five extra-base hits during that stretch pushed his slugging percentage from .359 to .429.

"Yesterday was a little blip, but I got a walk, so you got to take the positives," said Frazier, of his only hitless day of the series. "I've been working on a lot of things, and I feel really good at the plate."

J. Scott Butherus is a contributor to MLB.com based in St. Petersburg.

Chicago White Sox, Todd Frazier