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Sox starter Andre Rienzo ‘punished’ for falling behind hitters

RobVenturGordBeckham

Robin Ventura, Gordon Beckham

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Sunday

Indians at Sox

The facts: 1:10 p.m., CSN, 670-AM, 97.5-FM.

The starters: Zach McAllister (7-9, 4.11 ERA) vs. Chris Sale (11-12, 2.90).

Updated: October 16, 2013 7:00AM



The White Sox sinkhole keeps growing. The team fell to a season-high 32 games below .500 (58-90) after another loss Saturday to the Cleveland Indians.

The Sox didn’t score in the 8-1 defeat until the ninth, denying Indians starter Ubaldo Jimenez (12-9) the chance for his 11th career complete-game shutout.

That was small consolation for the Sox in another rough outing for starter Andre Rienzo (2-2).

“He was [behind] 1-0, 2-0 all the time,’’ manager Robin Ventura said. “It seemed like every hitter was in a good hitter’s count. You can’t do that without getting punished for it.’’

Rienzo lasted four innings, giving up five runs on seven hits. The big blows were a three-run homer by Lonnie Chisenhall and two-run shot by Asdrubal Cabrera, both in the fourth. Rienzo also walked four.

Rienzo has had a long year, pitching for the Brazilian national team in the World Baseball Classic in spring and through the minors.

“This is the first time I’ve played in September, but I don’t feel tired,’’ he said. “I can’t make excuses. It’s my fault. When I fall behind, it gives hitters a chance to get to me. I have to figure it out.’’

The Indians have won 11 in a row from the Sox, the longest active streak by any team in the majors against one opponent.

Second chances

Charlie Leesman couldn’t get an out in his last relief appearance on Thursday against the Indians. On Saturday, he worked two more innings of relief, giving up two runs on two hits.

Ventura will overlook the first appearance, and might give Leesman another chance to start after he did well in his first one against the Minnesota Twins.

“Everybody that plays has games that don’t go well,’’ Ventura said of Leesman’s outing on Thursday in which he allowed seven runs. “It’s more of how you bounce back from that. If that’s going to affect you, you’re not going to be around very long.’’

Ventura said Leesman could fill in if Hector Santiago gets extra rest.

Versatility

Rookie Marcus Semien started at third Saturday, a day after starting at second base. It was his sixth start since joining the team Sept. 4.

“There’s something to him having the ability [to play] at third, second and short,’’ Ventura said. “There’s nothing wrong with having some flexibility.’’

Email: tginnetti@suntimes.com

Twitter: @toniginnetti



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