White Sox 5, Royals 4
Adam Dunn showed signs of coming out of a season-long slump.
The struggling slugger hit a clutch two-run homer in the eighth
inning before a crazy finish gave the Chicago White Sox a 5-4 win
over the Kansas City Royals on Monday night.
”I hadn’t hit one in so long I almost forgot,” Dunn said.
”Seriously. I know it hit it on the barrel and hit it straight up.
But I’m just glad there was little wind that blew it out.”
A.J. Pierzynski scored the winning run on a balk called on Aaron
Crow in the ninth after the Royals had tied it on a homer first
ruled a triple in the top of the inning.
With the Royals trailing 4-3 in the ninth, Eric Hosmer led off
with what appeared to be a homer off White Sox closer Sergio Santos
(3-3). Second base umpire Alfonso Marquez signaled the ball was in
play as Hosmer advanced to third. Royals manager Ned Yost contested
the call, and the umpire reviewed it. Moments after the review,
Marquez signaled a homer.
Ramon Castro also hit a solo shot in the fifth for the White
Sox, who have won five of its last six games.
Pierzynski led off the ninth with a pinch-hit single off Crow
(2-2) in the ninth, then advanced to second on Gordon Beckham’s
sacrifice bunt. Pierzynski moved to third on a wild pitch, and
after striking out Mark Teahen, Crow walked pinch-hitter Juan
With Dunn up and facing a 1-0 count, Pierzynski noticed Crow’s
front shoulder move after he saw it, Pierzynski alerted the umpires
and that prompted the players in the White Sox’s dugout to jump up
and plate Ed Rapuano then called a balk, giving Chicago the
”He just came up a little bit,” Pierzynski said. ”It wasn’t
much, but I’ve seen it called a lot of times. I just saw his front
shoulder (move), and then he realized and stepped off and didn’t
think anyone saw it. No one reacted. It took a second for everyone
to finally realize what he had done. It was a good way to win. Good
comeback. I’m happy for Adam. It’s got to feel great for him, and
Mark pitched well. It’s a big win.”
Yost argued the call with Rapuano before heading back to the
”He was adamant that it was a balk,” Yost said. ”I’ve looked
at the replay four or five times and I’m having a hard time seeing
it. Eddie said that he turned his shoulder before he stepped
Royals right fielder Jeff Francoeur didn’t appreciate Rapuano
taking the game out of the players’ hands.
”I love Ed Rapuano and he’s one of my favorite (umpires), but
you better be damn well sure if someone balks when you call a game
on that,” said Francoeur, who homered. ”It’s a shame because
you’ve got an All-Star reliever up there, you’ve got Adam Dunn in
the box, the crowd was going crazy. It’s a great atmosphere, and
you’re going to call a balk to end the game. I just don’t see it.
I’ve always respected Ed, he’s always done a great job, but to make
that call in that situation, to me, that’s not right. …
”I understand if he drops the ball or blatantly moves, but he’s
calling him for flinching when he’s stepping back off the mound.
What the hell are you supposed to do? How are you supposed to step
off? It’s a disappointing call.”
After the game, the umpires declined an interview request.
With Kansas City holding a 3-2 lead, Crow allowed a leadoff
single to Brent Morel in the eighth and Dunn followed with his
eighth homer of the season on a 1-1 pitch to right field to put the
White Sox ahead 4-3.
Dunn, who came in hitting .165, received a loud ovation from the
31,077 fans in attendance – prompting a curtain call. It was his
first home run since June 12 against Oakland. He also passed Joe
DiMaggio on the career list, putting him at 77 with 362 career
Earlier in the game, Dunn singled to right in the fourth inning,
prompting a Bronx cheer from the fans. Dunn, acknowledged the crowd
by tipping his helmet to the fans. But Dunn says he understands
where the fans are coming from.
”I promise you it’s a way better feeling that way than the
other way,” he said. ”I appreciate them, especially tonight,
sticking with it. The thing about the fans, they boo and stuff
because they want to see the team and personally do so well. That’s
how I’ve been looking at it. It makes it more special when they
cheer like that.”
Santos couldn’t hold the lead after allowing the homer to Hosmer
in the ninth. It was Santos’ third blown save of the season.
Mark Buehrle allowed three runs on seven hits over seven innings
for the White Sox, who began a stretch of 19 consecutive games
against AL Central division rivals. Last season, the Chicago
finished 32-40 against AL Central opponents and are 7-11 against
the division this season.
Jeff Francis allowed two runs over on seven hits over six
innings. He struck out four without allowing a walk for the Royals,
who have lost six of seven.
Notes: Royals LF Alex Gordon, who left Sunday’s after getting
hit by a pitch in the left knee, was available to pinch hit and was
expected back in the lineup Wednesday.