NEW YORK — After playing record-breaking defense for a dozen games, the White Sox defense made its first error of the month on Sunday.
Ironically, it came back to hurt them.
Second baseman Brett Lawrie’s throw on a sixth-inning Jacoby Ellsbury grounder pulled Jose Abreu off the base and snapped a 12-game stretch — the longest in club history, according to Elias Sports — in which the White Sox defense didn’t commit an error.
Two batters later, Carlos Beltran gave the New York Yankees a one-run lead in a game they ultimately won, 7-5. Beltran’s two-run homer, the 400th of his career, off reliever Zach Duke put New York up 5-4 on the White Sox.
“That’s something, you see it happen on days,” White Sox manager Robin Ventura said. “It gets unfortunate when you end up losing a game, a close one.
“We’ll clean it up and it will get better.”
Lawrie’s smooth transition to second base is one reason why the White Sox have improved defensively this season. The error was his fourth in 38 games.
Overall, the White Sox defense entered Sunday seventh in Ultimate Zone Rating (4.8) and 13th in Defensive Runs Saved (5). Those figures are much higher than in 2015 when the White Sox finished in the bottom three in the majors in both categories.
It was the second time in the contest where a throw by Lawrie later resulted in a run. He made a nice play and one-hopped a throw to Jose Abreu in the first inning in an attempt to throw out Ellsbury. But Abreu couldn’t scoop it and Ellsbury would score on a Beltran sac fly.
The White Sox were also charged with a second error in the seventh inning for catcher’s interference on Alex Avila.
Prior to Sunday, the White Sox hadn’t committed an error since April 30, when they made two.