CHICAGO (AP) — lex Rios and Tyler Flowers homered, Hector Santiago pitched into the seventh inning and the Chicago White Sox beat the Oakland Athletics 4-2 on Sunday to salvage a split of their four-game series.
The White Sox appear to be waking up after dropping 10 of 11 and falling into last place in the AL Central. They’ve won two in a row behind strong starts from Santiago (2-4) and John Danks, and their bats are showing some life as well.
Flowers tied it 1-all in the third after Coco Crisp homered in the top half. The White Sox grabbed a 3-1 lead in the fourth on a sacrifice fly by Conor Gillaspie and an RBI double by Gordon Beckham. Rios chased A.J. Griffin (5-5) with a solo homer in the eighth to make it 4-2.
Santiago was simply superb after Danks and Addison Reed combined on a four-hitter Saturday, and the Athletics lost for the just their fifth time in 23 games.
In and out of the rotation after opening the season in the bullpen, the left-hander got the call with Jake Peavy sidelined by a broken rib and delivered in a big way. Santiago allowed two runs — one earned — and four hits while striking out six and walking three.
He left to loud cheers with a two-run lead after walking Josh Reddick with one out in the seventh. Matt Lindstrom came on and gave up a bloop single to a pinch-hitter John Jaso before Adam Rosales grounded into a force. Matt Thornton then threw wildly to first on a pickoff attempt, allowing Reddick to score and pull Oakland within one, before Crisp popped out.
Jesse Crain retired the side in the eighth, giving him 24 straight scoreless innings and 25 appearances in a row without allowing a run. Reed worked the ninth for his 19th save in 20 chances and his second in two days.
Griffin allowed seven hits and struck out five while walking one, but Oakland managed only five hits at the plate.
NOTES: OF Chris Young was back in Oakland’s lineup as the designated hitter after missing Saturday’s game because of an illness. “DH-ing him would probably be an easier transition for him,” manager Bob Melvin said. “I’m sure he lost some fluids yesterday, and he was having a tough time stomach-wise the night before. I’m not really sure (if it was food poisoning), but it wasn’t a virus.” … The Athletics are finally off on Monday after playing 17 straight days. They had won 13 of 16 during that stretch entering Sunday’s game. “We’ve had a long stretch of games here, National League teams, American League teams, different time zones,” Melvin said. “We’re a little bit tired right now. Usually, when you’re playing well, you don’t want the days off. But on this particular day, I think we’re all looking forward to the off day tomorrow.” … Dylan Axelrod (3-4, 3.73 ERA) starts Monday for the White Sox against Toronto knuckleballer R.A. Dickey (5-7, 4.66).
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