The last time Gavin Floyd took the mound, he allowed a crooked number immediately after the White Sox failed to score a runner on third with one out the inning before.
At least Floyd was able to go the distance in Minnesota. This time, slammed into the wall in the sixth inning, and by the time Ozzie Guillen peeled him off, he had already allowed four runs to allow the Cubs to seize the lead for good.
The White Sox clung to a 3-2 lead in the fifth when they appeared to regain their offensive mojo. Mark Teahen led off with a single, moved to second on a hit-and-run groundout, and then to third on Omar Vizquel's single. That put runners in scoring position for Carlos Quentin and Paul Konerko, and they combined to drive in all three runs in the first - Quentin with a cued single off the end of his bat, and Konerko with a two-run homer.
But they couldn't do it again. Quentin hit a shallow fly down the right field line that couldn't score Teahen, and Konerko picked a bad time for a rare terrible at-bat. He watched a 92 mph fastball down the middle for strike one, then went into defensive mode immediately afterward. He ended up striking out on a slider diving out of the zone, and Carlos Zambrano escaped the jam.
Four pitches later, Floyd lost the lead when he hung a curve to Starlin Castro. Castro had delivered a two-run single earlier in the game, and this time he drove in himself by blasting it six rows deep into the left field seats.
And three batters later, Floyd was out of the game. He allowed a single to Blake DeWitt, walked Aramis Ramirez, and then gave up a three-run homer to Carlos Pena that blew the game open.
The White Sox bullpen did its job, with Brian Bruney, Will Ohman, Lucas Harrell and Chris Sale combining to throw four scoreless innings. But it was in vain, because Ozzie Guillen's sixth-inning ejection provided the only fireworks. Alexei Ramirez tipped a ball into the dirt, and Geovany Soto snagged it before it crossed the plate and tagged Ramirez for the "2 unassisted." Ramirez thought the ball crossed into foul territory, and Guillen intervened to get ejected on Ramirez's behalf, kicking Soto's mask for good measure.
*Adam Dunn struck out in his first three at-bats, with a warning-track flyout his fourth time up. Even the Cubs can't cure him.
*Castro's two-run single came after Floyd spiked a curve in the dirt for a wild pitch. I don't think A.J. Pierzynski can be blamed, because he tried blocking it with his body. It took a wicked hop.
*Castro also stole second on the Floyd-Pierzynski combo ... on a pitchout.