White Sox

LIVE: White Sox wrap up set with Indians on CSN

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LIVE: White Sox wrap up set with Indians on CSN

Thursday, Sept. 22, 2011
Posted: 9:09 a.m.

READ: Buehrle happy to rebound after poor startsWATCH: Ozzie says De Aza is White Sox best playerFOLLOW: Brett Ballantini on Twitter

(AP) -- The Chicago White Sox can't blame their play on the road as the reason they've underachieved this season.

Having already secured a winning record away from home, the White Sox look for a third straight win over the Cleveland Indians to conclude the road portion of their schedule Thursday night.

A preseason favorite to win the AL Central, Chicago (76-79) instead is trying to surpass the Indians for second place in the division. While the White Sox's 33-42 record at home is one reason they'll miss the playoffs, they've been able to remain relatively competitive by going 43-37 away from U.S. Cellular Field. It's the second straight season they've posted a winning road record.

Chicago moved one-half game behind second-place Cleveland (76-78) with an 8-4 win Wednesday. Rookie third baseman Brent Morel hit a two-run homer and drove in three as the White Sox won for the third time in four games and improved to 6-2 at Progressive Field.

Morel has hit seven of his nine homers and driven in 17 of his 39 runs in his last 19 games.

Outfielder Alejandro De Aza added two hits with two RBIs and is 5 for 13 with six RBIs in this series. He's hit .350 with 20 RBIs in his last 32 games.

"Right now, he's our best player overall when it comes to fielding, running, hitting," manager Ozzie Guillen said of De Aza.

While Morel and De Aza continue to contribute, teammate Adam Dunn struck out twice Wednesday to increase his season total to 167. Dunn's strikeout total continues to be higher than his batting average (.166).

It's uncertain if Dunn will be in the lineup against scheduled Cleveland starter Jeanmar Gomez (4-2, 3.78 ERA), who is 4-0 with a 1.88 ERA since being recalled from Triple-A Columbus on Aug. 30.

The right-hander has allowed two runs in each of his last two starts, the latest over 6 2-3 innings of a 10-4 win at Minnesota on Saturday. Gomez yielded two runs in six innings of an 8-4 win at Chicago on Sept. 9.

Travis Hafner hit a two-run homer Wednesday for the Indians, losers of three of four. The slugger is 6 for 18 with two home runs and eight RBIs in his last five contests.

Cleveland could have All-Star shortstop Asdrubal Cabrera back after he missed the last two games with a back strain. He's hitting .274 and set career highs with 24 homers and 87 RBIs this season.

"I think I'll be in there (Thursday) for sure," Cabrera told the Indians' official website.

Cabrera is 1 for 4 against Philip Humber (9-8, 3.59), who takes the mound for the White Sox trying to bounce back from his latest outing. The right-hander allowed two runs in 14 1-3 innings while going 1-0 in his previous three starts before he matched a season high by giving up six runs in six innings and did not factor in the decision of a 7-6 loss at Kansas City on Friday.

Humber has no record and a 2.45 ERA in two starts versus Cleveland in 2011

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

Carlos Rodon's first win in 10 months showed he could still be the ace of the future for White Sox

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USA TODAY

Carlos Rodon's first win in 10 months showed he could still be the ace of the future for White Sox

As encouraging as the reports are on many of the White Sox’s minor-league pitching prospects, Carlos Rodon’s effort against the Athletics on Sunday at Guaranteed Rate Field could prove just as significant to the rebuild on the South Side.

Looking much like the ace the Sox envisioned prior to Rodon’s rough 2017 season that ended with shoulder surgery, the left-hander put together his most successful effort of ’18 during a 10-3 drubbing of the Athletics before a sun-drenched crowd of 21,908.

Making his fourth start of the season, Rodon matched a career-high by going eight innings. He yielded two runs on seven hits with no walks and three strikeouts. Rodon earned his first win of the season to help the Sox salvage a split of the four-game series.

“I felt good today—a lot of strikes,” Rodon said. “It was good to go eight and just be ahead of guys.”

Helping matters for Rodon was an offensive explosion by the Sox, led by Yoan Moncada’s career-high six RBIs. After falling behind 2-0, the Sox plated five runs in each of the fifth and sixth innings as Moncada cleared the bases with a double off the base of the wall in the fifth and launched his 10th home run of the season to drive in three more an inning later.

“Today was a great day,” Moncada said via a team interpreter. “I just went out to play the game the way that I play. Just to have fun. It was a very good game for me.”

Daniel Palka and Yolmer Sanchez also homered as the Sox won for just the second time in their last 11 games.

Rodon was the happy recipient of the run support to win his first game since Aug. 21, 2017, against the Twins. On Sunday, he threw 99 pitches, 69 for strikes and was consistently in the mid-90s with his fastball.

“I’m looking to do that every time out,” Rodon said. “Just show up and establish the strike zone with the fastball and be aggressive.”

The 25-year-old’s second-inning strikeout of Khris Davis was the 400th of Rodon’s career. It is a career that is continuing after a surgery that was a setback, but one that did not derail Rodon’s confidence that he would again pitch effectively.

“There are up-and-down days when you go through shoulder surgery or any surgery for any player,” Rodon said. “You've just got to work through it and try to make your way back. I'm here now and it’s looking up and I’m trying to get better.”

So is it reasonable to view Rodon as the future ace after all?

“You certainly can’t discount that,” manager Rick Renteria said. “He has to go out there and continue to get his feet underneath him and get through the rest of the season healthy and climbing.”

In other Sox pitching news, Renteria said starter Dylan Covey, who was removed in the fifth inning of Saturday’s game due to a hip flexor injury, “felt better” Sunday and the team will continue to monitor the right-hander’s progress.

Meanwhile, veteran Miguel Gonzalez made a rehab start for Triple-A Charlotte as he continues to recover from inflammation in his right rotator cuff. Gonzalez went three innings and allowed one hit with a walk and a strikeout. Outfielder Eloy Jimenez belted his first homer for the Knights in the game.

Joakim Soria knows he is turning into a valuable trade asset for White Sox

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USA TODAY

Joakim Soria knows he is turning into a valuable trade asset for White Sox

No one knows better than Joakim Soria that the more successful he is as the White Sox’s closer, there is an increased likelihood that the veteran right-hander will be headed out of town at some point.

Soria has not only solidified the back end of the bullpen, the 34-year-old has emerged as perhaps the Sox’s most valuable trade asset to a contending team in need of relief help.

Over this last 14 appearances, Soria has not allowed an earned run and has converted all seven save chances with five hits allowed, two walks and 15 strikeouts.

“My body feels good and my arm feels good,” Soria said before the Sox defeated the Athletics 10-3 on a sunny Sunday afternoon at Guaranteed Rate Field. “I come to the ballpark expecting to pitch and … I try to be out there and help this team win.”

While the Sox haven’t done a whole lot of winning of late—Sunday’s win was just their second in their last 11 games—when they are victorious it’s accompanied by a Soria save. With the Sox’s rebuild in full swing, Soria understands that general manager Rick Hahn won’t hesitate to flip him in a trade.

“Players say they don’t think about it but you have to think about it,” said Soria, who was acquired from the Royals on Jan. 4 in a three-team trade also involving the Dodgers. “When you have a family with three kids and a wife you have to be prepared for everything. But it’s not like I come to the field thinking about that. It’s just God’s plan and whatever happens it’s a business and you prepare.”

Soria has 215 career saves, including 162 in seven seasons with the Royals, but hadn’t been a full-time closer since notching a combined 24 saves with the Tigers and Pirates. With the Sox, Soria won the closing job over fellow veteran Nate Jones in spring training and has been nearly unhittable in recent weeks.

Over his last 13 2/3 innings pitched, Soria has held opponents to a .109 batting average and sports a 2.89 ERA for the season. He has issued five walks in 28 innings and is averaging 10.29 strikeouts per nine innings pitched.

The two-time All-Star has settled in nicely in a Sox clubhouse featuring a mix of veterans and promising talents. Soria has to balance that with the knowledge he might not be around as the season progresses.

“It’s something I can’t control,” Soria said. “I have a really good relationship with these guys and the chemistry with this team is very good. I can’t think outside of the box because (a trade) hasn’t happened yet. You have to keep focused and be ready for today’s game.”