White Sox

LIVE: Dunn brings in Quentin, Sox lead 1-0

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LIVE: Dunn brings in Quentin, Sox lead 1-0

Monday, April 25, 2011
Posted: 10:31 a.m.

Associated Press
Curtis Granderson has the New York Yankees playing well as they return home to face a team they've dominated in the Bronx.

Granderson looks to stay hot as the Yankees open a four-game series against the slumping Chicago White Sox on Monday.

New York (12-6) has won three straight and seven of nine. It's averaged 6.6 runs and has hit 18 homers during that nine-game stretch.

The Yankees closed a rain-shortened, two-game series at Baltimore over the weekend with a 6-3, 11-inning victory Sunday. Russell Martin drove in Robinson Cano with the go-ahead run after Mariano Rivera gave up the lead in the ninth - his second blown save in nine tries.

"We found a way to get it done," manager Joe Girardi said. "That's the bottom line."

Cano doubled to lead off the 11th, extending his hitting streak to 13 games. He's batting .345 during that run.

New York also received another big game from Granderson, who hit a two-run homer - his seventh of the season and fifth in seven games - while driving in three runs. Granderson, who is hitting .424 during an eight-game hitting streak, will try to extend it versus the White Sox, although he's hitting only .218 against them during his career - his lowest average against any AL opponent.

However, teammate Derek Jeter, who had four hits Sunday, is batting .519 in his last seven home games against Chicago.

The Yankees have won 13 of these teams' last 16 meetings in the Bronx.

A visit to Yankee Stadium could make an already horrendous road trip even worse for Chicago (8-14). The White Sox have dropped 10 of 11 overall and six of seven on their 11-game swing.

Chicago got outscored 21-3 in a weekend sweep at Detroit, suffering shutouts in the last two games. The White Sox lost 3-0 Sunday, extending their scoreless streak to 20 innings.

Chicago is batting .193 over the last 11 games. Adam Dunn went 0 for 3 with one strikeout Sunday, dropping his average to a season-low .145. The veteran slugger has two hits and 15 strikeouts in his last 30 at-bats.

"Nothing works," manager Ozzie Guillen said. "I'll keep plugging guys in and hope things come around, but now every day is like rewinding a movie and watching it again."

While their offense is slumping, White Sox hitters have had success in the past against A.J. Burnett (3-0, 4.37 ERA).

Burnett has lost his last two starts against Chicago, giving up 16 runs and 18 hits in eight innings.

However, Dunn is 3 for 14 with five strikeouts against Burnett.

The right-hander failed to pick up his fourth straight victory Tuesday, when another blown save by Juan Rivera led to a 6-5, 10-inning loss to Toronto. Burnett allowed three runs in 5 1-3 innings, striking out six but walking five.

Phil Humber (1-2, 4.42) will start for the White Sox, seeking to avoid losing a third straight start.

The right-hander allowed a season-high four runs in 5 1-3 innings of a 4-1 loss to Tampa Bay on Wednesday.

In the rotation in place of the injured Jake Peavy, Humber has received just four total runs of support in three starts.

Copyright 2011 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

For on-the-rise White Sox, learning to win also means learning to lose

For on-the-rise White Sox, learning to win also means learning to lose

The White Sox lost Saturday night.

That’s baseball, of course, they’re not all going to be winners. And this rebuilding franchise has seen plenty of losses. But the feelings have been so good of late — whether because of Eloy Jimenez’s 400-foot homers or Lucas Giolito’s Cy Young caliber season to this point or a variety of other positive signs that make the White Sox future so bright — that losing Saturday to the first-place New York Yankees seemed rather sour.

Obviously there will be plenty more losses for this White Sox team before the book closes on the 2019 campaign. Back under .500, these South Siders aren’t expected to reach elite status before all the pieces arrive, and it would be no shock if they’re removed from the playoff race in the American League by the time crunch time rolls around in September.

But don’t tell these White Sox that an 8-4 defeat is a return to reality or a reminder that this team is still a work in progress. Even if, for a lot of players, development is still occurring at the major league level, the “learning experiences” that have been such a large part of the conversation surrounding this team in recent seasons and their daily goal of winning baseball games aren’t mutually exclusive.

“The Yankees are sitting in first place and they lost two games in a row,” catcher James McCann said Saturday night, providing a reminder of how the first two games of this weekend series went. “Just because you're expected to win and expected to be World Series contenders doesn't mean you're not going to lose ballgames. It's how you bounce back.

“And it doesn't mean you're going to win tomorrow, either. It's just, how do you handle a defeat? How do you handle a bad at-bat? How do you handle a bad outing, whatever it may be? But it doesn't mean that we step back and say, ‘Oh, we're back under .500, we're supposed to lose.’

“We expect to win when we show up to the ballpark. You can take learning experiences whether you win or lose. Do I think a game like tonight reminds us we're supposed to be in a rebuilding mode? No. We still expect to win, and we're going to show up tomorrow with that mentality.”

Maybe that’s a description of the much-discussed “learning to win” young teams supposedly need to do on the road to contender status. Maybe that can’t happen until a team figures out how to bounce back from a defeat — until it learns how to lose and how to act in the wake of a loss.

For all McCann’s certainty about the team’s expectations on a daily basis, his explanation was peppered with questions. He said he’s seen the answer to “how do you bounce back?” from this club, and his three-run homer in the eighth inning Saturday night was fairly convincing evidence that the White Sox didn’t use up all their fight just getting back to .500.

So while the White Sox know they won’t win every game — that no team will — they need to know how they handle defeat. Losing, it turns out, might end up being more instructive about when this team is ready to win.

“I think we've done a pretty good job (bouncing back),” McCann said. “You look at the road trip in Houston and Minnesota where we took two out of four from a good Houston team and then played really not very good baseball for three days in Minnesota only to come home and have an extremely good homestand.

“It's the big picture. It's not the very next day. It's not, ‘We've got to bounce back and win.’ It's not a must-win situation in the middle of June. But it's how do you handle yourself? How does a game like tonight, do you show up flat tomorrow and let it snowball into a three-, four-game spiral? Or do you fight?

“And that's what this team's been really good at doing is fighting and not giving in.”

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Eloy Jimenez gets rave review from Yankees All Star: 'He can be a star for all of MLB'

Eloy Jimenez gets rave review from Yankees All Star: 'He can be a star for all of MLB'

The temperature is rising on the South Side, and if you look outside, you know it has nothing to do with Mother Nature.

Instead, it’s a heat wave coming from a fresh-faced 22-year-old slugger who’s crushing baseballs, igniting a fan base and screaming “Hi Mom!” to his actual mother whenever he spots a TV camera with its red light on.

Eloy Jimenez has arrived with the White Sox, and according to a New York Yankees All Star who has known him for years, the best is yet to come.

“Not this year, but next year, he’s going to be even better,” infielder Gleyber Torres said about Jimenez.

The two of them were signed by that team across town in 2013 when they were both 16 years old. They were practically inseparable back then, and they remain tight to this day.

“I talk with Gleyber pretty much every single day now. He’s kind of like my brother,” Jimenez said. “We haven’t lost that communication, and I think that’s good for us.”

Torres echoed similar thoughts about Jimenez.

“In my first couple years with the Cubs, he was my roommate every day. We’ve got a really good relationship. We’re like brothers. We are really good friends,” Torres said. “I’m just happy to see what he’s doing right now.”

Which, lately, has been just about everything.

There was that majestic home run Jimenez belted on Wednesday against the Washington Nationals that landed on the center field concourse at Guaranteed Rate Field, the two walks the next day when the Yankees decided to pitch around Jimenez as if he was a perennial All Star, and then the two-homer game on Friday: The first one gave the White Sox the lead, the second stuck a dagger into the Yankees, as well as the heart of his longtime friend.

“For sure, I didn’t like it,” Torres said with a smile about Jimenez’s two-homer, six-RBI game. “I’m not surprised. I knew Eloy before he signed with the Cubs out of the Dominican. He’s a big dude. The power is coming every day.”

How good can Jimenez be? Torres, who plays on a star-studded team with Giancarlo Stanton, Aaron Judge and Didi Gregorius, sees Jimenez reaching the same stratosphere.

“He can be a star for all of MLB. He’s just a young guy right now, but when he matures a little more, he can do everything.”

Jimenez is turning up the heat in Chicago, and it’s not even summer yet.

The South Side can’t wait for the sizzle to come.

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