White Sox

Sox show off bounce-back ability

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Sox show off bounce-back ability

By Paul LaTour
CSNChicago.com contributor

One characteristic of the White Sox this season has been their ability to shake off bad losses.

Just in the past 12 games, theyve had to rebound from three of them -- 9-1 against Kansas City on May 13, 7-2 at Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim on May 16, and 9-2 against Minnesota on May 22.

Yet after their 14-7 victory over Cleveland on Saturday at U.S. Cellular Field, the Sox have won four in a row and eight out of nine, showing the distinct ability to ignore what happened in the past.

Alex Rios provided a microcosm of that attitude Saturday.

Rios was robbed of two extra-base hits with multiple RBI in his first three plate appearances. He still finished 3-for-5 with a home run and a double, while tying his season high with three RBI.

Theres no point to lose focus on the game because youre going to have a couple more at-bats that could be useful, Rios said. You get a little mad, but its not something thats going to take you away from your plan.

In Rios first plate appearance, he drove a Derek Lowe pitch deep into center field. But Michael Brantley timed it perfectly as he leapt to catch the ball over the fence, just to the left of the 400-foot marker.

Despite losing a three-run home run on the catch, Rios appreciated the stellar defense.

Its a good play, he said. With runners on base its an even better play. You have to understand that if its a good play, its a good play.

Rios followed that with an RBI single and later scored during Chicagos four-run third. But in the fourth, Rios was robbed again.

With Paul Konerko on second, Rios sliced a pitch down the right-field line only to see it end up in the glove of a sliding Shin-Soo Choo. Rios had the final say, though, as he finished with an RBI double and two-run home run in his final two plate appearances.

If I changed my mentality, it would have ruined my day, Rios said. So you just have to keep focused and look forward to the other at-bats.

Rios was only part of the story as the Sox set season-highs in runs and hits (17) while earning their fourth straight victory. Dayan Viciedo finished with a career-high five RBI, while Konerko continued his torrid pace with a four-hit, three-run, two-RBI afternoon.

The offensive surge helped Jake Peavy despite a less-than-stellar appearance. He gave up a season-high seven runs in 6 13 innings, yet also had a season-high nine strikeouts and earned the win to improve to 6-1.

Peavy said Rios exemplified what is becoming the signature of the White Sox under first-year manager Robin Ventura.

You should watch the attitude of this team, Peavy said. Watch what Alex went through. Were going to battle and grind this thing out to the end. You watch that attitude with a specific player (like Rios). Thats just the mentality were taking with Robin and this team.

Dane Dunning left minor league start with 'moderate' elbow strain

Dane Dunning left minor league start with 'moderate' elbow strain

Dane Dunning has been nothing but consistent since joining the White Sox organization in the Adam Eaton trade before the 2017 season.

He has performed well at three different levels in the minor leagues and has stayed healthy. That second part is currently in question after he left a start for Double-A Birmingham on Saturday with elbow soreness.

Dunning left in the fourth inning in what was developing into one of his worst starts of the season. He had four strikeouts, but also walked four and gave up two runs (one earned). The four walks matched a season high.

Here is how things went down on his final pitch:

It's too early for a full diagnosis, but Dunning is expected to have an MRI in the next few days. White Sox manager Rick Renteria talked about Dunning's injury before Sunday's game against the Athletics.

"I think everybody considered it a very moderate strain," Renteria said. "Nobody is at this point too concerned. They still have to re-evaluate more. We won’t know more until they get further evaluation and at that point everybody will know where he’s at. Right now he still has to be re-evaluated."

Dunning, 23, began the season at Single-A Winston-Salem where he posted a 2.59 ERA in four starts with 31 strikeouts against three walks in 24 1/3 innings. The Florida product then was promoted to Birmingham where he has a 2.76 ERA. In 11 starts with the Barons, Dunning has 69 strikeouts and 23 walks in 62 innings.

Dunning is one of the top pitching prospects in the White Sox farm system along with Michael Kopech and Alec Hansen.

Chris Kuc contributed to this report.

61 Days to Kickoff: Maine West

61 Days to Kickoff: Maine West

NBCSportsChicago.com preps reporter "Edgy" Tim O’Halloran spotlights 100 high school football teams in 100 days. The first 75 team profiles will focus on teams making strides across Chicagoland and elsewhere in the state. Starting July 30, we’ll unveil the @NBCSPrepsTop 25 Power Rankings, leading up to kickoff on Friday, Aug. 24.

School: Maine West

Head coach: Jason Kradman

Assistant coaches: Steve Piha (Def. Coordinator), Mike O'Brill (DB/ST Coordinator), Tony Manicke (LB/Head JV Coach), Dan Wilson (OL) Russ Swenson (TE) Ryan Willett (QB) Matt Boswell (DL) Trent Greco (WR) Kyle Prater (WR) Mike Smith (Head Frosh Coach) Joe Duszynski (Frosh Asst.) and DJ Frey (Frosh Asst.).

How they fared in 2017: 7-3 (4-1 Central Suburban North Conference). Maine West made the Class 7A state football playoff field. The Warriors lost to Benet Academy in opening round action.

2018 Regular Season Schedule:

Aug. 24 vs Mundelein

Sept. 1 @ Fenton

Sept. 7 vs Elk Grove

Sept. 14 @ Hersey

Sept. 21 vs Glenbrook North

Sept. 28 @ Maine East

Oct. 5 vs Vernon Hills

Oct. 12 vs Highland Park

Oct. 19 @ Deerfield

[MORE: 65 Days to Kickoff - Elmwood Park]

Biggest storyline: Will history repeat itself? Can the Warriors post back-to-back IHSA state playoff appearances? If so, it'd be a first for the Des Plaines high school.

Names to watch this season: RB/LB Jake Bellizzi, FB/LB Krystian Garbicz and WR/DB Ely Grimmer

Biggest holes to fill: The Warriors will need to replace standout TE Matt Kentgen (now at Butler). He was a multi-year starter and team leader last fall.  

EDGY's Early Take: Maine West, coached by Jason Kradman, has been one of the area's better success stories. Kradman took over the Warriors program in 2014 and guided the Warriors to their first state playoff appearance since 2002. With 13 returning starters back from a season ago (seven offense, six defense) and a program-wide boost in overall numbers and excitement, look for the Warriors to have a good shot at playoff football once again this October.