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Nationals 8, White Sox 7: First frustrating game of the year

The White Sox made two comebacks but fell a run short on Tuesday night.

Adam LaRoche hit two homers to lead the Nationals over the White Sox.
Adam LaRoche hit two homers to lead the Nationals over the White Sox.
Patrick McDermott

The White Sox had chances early in the game against Gio Gonzalez to put up a crooked number but let the opportunities fall by the wayside. In the first inning, Jeff Keppinger and Alex Rios had one out singles and Paul Konerko drew a walk to load the bases, but could only manage one run in the inning courtesy of a Gonzalez balk. Dayan Viciedo struck out and Alexei Ramirez flew out to center to end the threat.

In the third inning, Alejandro De Aza hit a lead off double but Keppinger struck out, Rios bounced out and after a walk to Konerko, Viciedo struck out.

In the fifth, De Aza smoked a one-out double over the head of left fielder Bryce Harper, but got doubled up on an infield pop up to shortstop Ian Desmond.

Jake Peay faced the minimum through the first three innings, thanks in part to two outfield assists by Alex Rios who gunned down Harper and Gonzalez trying to turn singles into doubles. In the fourth though, Denard Span did what he does against the White Sox. He led off with a single, and after a Jayson Werth fly out to the deepest part of the ballpark, went to third on a Harper single and scored on a Ryan Zimmerman sac fly.

The Nationals took the lead in the fifth with a leadoff homer by Desmond. The lead was short lived though as Alex Rios led off with a single, stole second and took third when Wilson Ramos' throw hit Rios in the helmet and bounced into right-center field. Konerko hit a sac fly to center to even things up at two. Viciedo followed with a single and moved to second when Ramirez hit a chopper that Desmond couldn't pick up, but a Tyler Flowers line out and an Angel Sanchez ground out ended the inning.

In the sixth, Span led off with a double and Werth followed with a rocket into the left field seats to make it 4-2. After a Harper strikeout, Zimmerman drew a walk and Adam LaRoche picked a bad (for us) spot for his first hit of 2013, as he launched a homer over the center field wall to make it 6-2.

The Sox battled back in the seventh. With one out, De Aza drew a walk and Keppinger followed with a single. Rios popped up to first, but Konerko picked a good (for us) spot for his first homer of 2013, which made the score 6-5.

Unfortunately, the Nationals weren't done. Steve Lombardozzi drew a one-out walk. Donnie Veal was brought in to face Span, but threw a pick-off attempt down the line moving Lombardozzi to third. He then walked Span, which sent Matt Lindstrom in from the bullpen. Werth singled to left to make it 7-5.

In the bottom of the eighth, LaRoche was at it again as he took Matt Thornton deep.

With the Sox down three in the ninth, Rafael Soriano was brought in to close the game. De Aza came through with a one-out single and after a Jeff Keppinger fly out, Rios connected for a two-run shot into the bullpen to bring the Sox within one, but Konerko flew out to end the game.

  • Gordon Beckham started the game, but was removed early in the game because of an apparent wrist injury on a swing in the second inning. He was replaced by Angel Sanchez, who went 0-2 in his White Sox debut.
  • Don Cooper was hospitalized prior to the game with a bout of diverticulitis. I have heard much of this condition until recently and from what I've seen and heard, it isn't fun and can be very serious.
  • De Aza, Keppinger and Rios had eight hits and six runs scored at the top of the lineup, but the 5-9 spots were 2-20 on the day.
  • Tomorrow, Gavin Floyd takes the mound against Jordan Zimmermann as the Sox look to even up the series.
Record: 4-3 | Box