White Sox beat Cubs 3-2 to even crosstown series
By RICK GANO AP Sports Writer June 21, 2011 11:36PM
A Sox fan cheers as the White Sox take the field as the Chicago White Sox host the Chicago Cubs in game two of the Crosstown Classic Tuesday June 21, 2011 at US Cellular Field. | Tom Cruze~Sun-Times
Updated: June 22, 2011 12:42PM
Brent Morel hit a go-ahead sacrifice fly in the seventh inning and the White Sox beat the Cubs 3-2 on Tuesday night to even their crosstown series at one game apiece.
The game was delayed for 1 hour, 44 minutes after a thunderstorm hit U.S. Cellular Field in the top of the sixth with one out and the Cubs having runners on the corners.
Winds made it difficult for the grounds crew to get the tarp on the field and then when it was time to take it off, the infield was muddy and needed several bags of drying compound before it was ready for play.
Paul Konerko homered for a fifth straight game for the White Sox and Carlos Pena hit his second in as many nights for the Cubs, who won Monday’s opener 6-3.
Sergio Santos struck out Aramis Ramirez with two on to end the eighth and then pitched the ninth for his 13th save in 15 chances, fanning Pena to end it.
Before the storm, Reed Johnson and Starlin Castro had consecutive singles off Mark Buehrle, who then struck out Jeff Baker before play was halted.
Jesse Crain (3-2) relieved Buehrle after the delay and surrendered a sacrifice fly to Ramirez, tying the game at 2-2. Buehrle, who was shooting for his major league-best 25th interleague win, gave up five hits and was charged with the two runs in 5 1-3 innings.
Konerko’s 21st homer leading off the bottom of the second opened the scoring against Cubs starter Matt Garza, who gave up four hits and two runs in his five innings before the delay.
Jeff Samardzija (5-3) came on to pitch in the bottom of the sixth. He gave up a leadoff double to Alexei Ramirez in the seventh before Cubs second baseman DJ LaMahieu made a nice stop behind the bag on A.J. Pierzynski’s grounder as Ramirez had to stop at third on the infield single.
After Alex Rios popped out, Morel delivered a sacrifice fly to center for a 3-2 lead.
Rios led off the bottom of the third with a double, stopped at third on Morel’s single and scored on Juan Pierre’s sacrifice bunt, giving the White Sox a 2-0 lead.
Pena hit his 13th homer of the season to cut the Cubs’ deficit to one in the fifth.
Castro continued his stellar play at shortstop for the Cubs with two more defensive gems, including one to retire Pierzynski on a slow roller past the mound to end the fourth.
Notes: Struggling White Sox DH Adam Dunn struck out twice and went 0 for 4 as boos continued from all over U.S. Cellular Field. Dunn has whiffed 91 times in 217 at-bats this season. He entered the game batting .178. He does have 41 walks. “I should put Dunn at leadoff because he’s the one who gets on base the most, but instead of striking out four (times), he might strike out six (times),” manager Ozzie Guillen said. ... Guillen was asked about 22-year-old Dayan Viciedo, who is batting .328 with 11 homers and 49 RBIs at Triple-A Charlotte. But the White Sox want the young Cuban star, who is playing the outfield, to be in the lineup every day and not sit on the bench or platoon. ... The game drew a less-than-capacity crowd (35,155) for the second straight night. Monday night’s opener drew 36,005.