Rios, Ozzie can’t strand it anymore
By Toni Ginnetti firstname.lastname@example.org September 10, 2011 10:08PM
Alexei Ramirez, Lou Marson
Updated: November 9, 2011 3:25PM
Alex Rios’ walk-off grand slam in the 10th inning Saturday did more than give the White Sox a 7-3 victory over the Cleveland Indians.
It kept manager Ozzie Guillen from blowing his cool after the Sox stranded 15 runners and wasted four bases-loaded opportunities.
‘‘That’s the White Sox’ season right there,’’ Guillen said. ‘‘The only good thing is we won. But you play that many innings and don’t take advantage of opportunities. I’m glad we won, but it’s tough when you see that over and over.’’
Rios’ homer was the Sox’ first game-ending drive of the season and the first since Rios won a game April 24, 2010, against the Seattle Mariners.
It was their first game-ending grand slam since
Aug. 27, 2002, when Joe Crede hit one against the Toronto Blue Jays.
Sergio Santos (4-4), who pitched the 10th, got the victory.
But the Sox’ slim hopes in the American League Central took another hit with the Detroit Tigers beating the Minnesota Twins 3-2 to reduce their magic number to nine.
It was Rios’ first career grand slam. He had been 0-for-12 with the bases loaded this season before Saturday.
Not Dunn yet
Adam Dunn was the designated hitter in his first action on the homestand. He was booed in the first after he struck out to end the inning, leaving the bases loaded. He singled in the sixth to end an 0-for-18 streak.
But the boos may have been the loudest when he struck out in the ninth inning with two men on and no outs.
The fans also were upset because Guillen didn’t pinch-hit for him with left-hander Tony Sipp pitching. Dunn is hitting .037 against lefties.
‘‘I thought about it, but he’s making $14 million a year,’’ Guillen said. ‘‘He has to earn it.
‘‘The reason we brought him here is to hit with men on base. That’s a lot of money to pinch-hit for. A lot of people were blaming me. No, blame him. He didn’t do the job today.’’
Dunn has struck out 160 times, the second-most by a Sox player behind Dave Nicholson, who struck out 175 times in 1963.
The Sox’ bullpen has put up sparkling numbers in the last nine home games with a 4-0 record and 0.66 ERA (two earned runs in 271/3 innings).
The newest faces are among the contributors, including Addison Reed, who had 111 strikeouts this summer while rising through four minor-league levels.
He has appeared in two games and has struck out six.
‘‘I think his stuff is there,’’ Guillen said. ‘‘He has a great opportunity to be a good big-league pitcher. His fastball is a big-league fastball, and his changeup is outstanding. I don’t know about his breaking ball, but it will get better. I think he’s a very, very smart kid.’’
Reed, who was drafted last year, could be part of the major-league team next season, Guillen said.
‘‘We’ll have all of spring training to figure it out, but I like what I see,’’ Guillen said. ‘‘We’ve been lucky with him and [Chris] Sale because they throw strikes.
‘‘He feels comfortable out there, and he’s facing some good ones. We don’t have him facing just Triple-A guys. He faces some good ones, and he’s done pretty good.’’