What an ending!
The White Sox, in a close game throughout, beat division rival Minnesota in a comeback, 4-3 win Friday night. And the win came in a dramatic walk-off from José Abreu in the bottom of the ninth — not once, but twice.
With the bases loaded and one out, the veteran appeared to be hit by Jorge Lopez’s first pitch for the walk-off win, only for it to be overturned and called a foul ball. Just one pitch later, Abreu had a walk-off RBI fielder’s choice to secure the win. That puts the Sox back at .500 and just two games behind Minnesota for second and three games behind Cleveland for the ALC lead.
White Sox WALK IT OFF! pic.twitter.com/OikHKxKXj0— White Sox Talk (@NBCSWhiteSox) September 3, 2022
Taking the first of nine games left in the season against Minnesota was key, and both teams knew what this first game meant. Emotions flared in the ninth and both benches cleared after Andrew Vaughn was hit by a pitch near his head to load the bases. Acting manager Miguel Cairo was ejected in the scrum, and Lance Lynn memorably “hopped” the dugout railing to jaw at Lopez over the pitch.
The win was the third straight for the Sox, who have won three of four since Cairo took over.
Everyone in the lineup contributed with at least one hit. Veteran Yasmani Grandal, like Abreu, played a huge role in the victory, at the plate and behind it. Grandal went 2-for-4 with a homer and two RBIs, scoring two of his team’s four runs. He also gunned down Twins pinch-runner Billy Hamilton at third base, with one out in the eighth — a very key play, and no small task. And as often happens, right after a big defensive play comes an even bigger play at the plate; in this case, Yaz tied the game up with a solo shot:
Yaz please!#ChangeTheGame | @NBCSChicago pic.twitter.com/l1sJ8KChZ3— Chicago White Sox (@whitesox) September 3, 2022
Davis Martin threw five scoreless innings out of the bullpen after Joe Kelly allowed two runs in the first as the opener for the game. Martin settled things down, allowing just three hits and a walk with two strikeouts.
With Cleveland in free-fall and having big injuries dealt to its rotation, the White Sox have trimmed their deficit in the division as quickly as the sweep by Arizona built it.
Tomorrow night in a slightly earlier (6 p.m.) start, prime Cy Young candidate Dylan Cease takes the mound to hopefully bring the Sox a step closer.
No Six Pack, so here’s your game polls:
Who was the MVP of tonight’s thrilling win over the Twins?
This poll is closed
José Abreu: 2-for-5, GWRBI
Yasmani Grandal: 2-for-4, HR, 2 R, RBI, K, 1-for-1 CS
Davis Martin: 5 IP, 3 H, BB, 2 K,
Reynaldo López: IP, 2 K, 11 pitches/8 strikes
Lance Lynn: Hopping the dugout rail without blowing out his knee and jawing at the Twins in defense of Andrew Vaughn
Miguel Cairo: Now 4-1 career as manager, got ejected for wanting to throw hands with Lopez/Rocco/Twins en masse
Who was the Cold Cat tonight against the Twins?
This poll is closed
Joe Kelly: IP, 2 H, 2 ER, 2 BB, 2 K
Elvis Andrus: 1-for-5
Leury García: 1-for-3, K, E