White Sox 7, Blue Jays 2
Backed by a five homer barrage, Francisco Liriano earned his
first win with the Chicago White Sox.
Alex Rios hit a three-run homer against his former team, Liriano
snapped a six-start winless skid and the Chicago White Sox beat the
Toronto Blue Jays 7-2 on Thursday night.
”He’s a big acquisition,” Rios said of Liriano. ”If he keeps
doing what he’s been doing lately, he’s going to make us so much
better and that’s what we need right now.”
Tyler Flowers, Dayan Viciedo, Alexei Ramirez and Dewayne Wise
all hit solo home runs as the White Sox matched a season high by
going deep five times. Chicago has hit 28 home runs in its past 13
games. The power surge helped Chicago win its first series in
Toronto since 2006.
Manager Robin Ventura said his players were ”giddy” with
celebration at the rare series win at Rogers Centre, none more so
than A.J. Pierzynski.
”It means a lot,” Pierzynski said. ”I know coming here since
I’ve been here it hasn’t been real productive or successful. It’s
just nice to come in here and win a series.
”Given the time of year and the situation we’re in where every
game means so much, to come in here and win three out of four is
huge,” Pierzynski added.
Viciedo and Flowers hit consecutive long balls in the fifth
inning, the eighth time this season the White Sox have gone
Play was halted for 4 minutes in the seventh inning while a fan
received medical attention and was taken away on a stretcher.
Ambulance sirens could be heard outside the stadium as the fan was
carted off, still receiving CPR.
Toronto Police Services confirmed that the male fan later died
at a hospital after collapsing in the stands.
”Our thoughts and prayers go out to the family of the person
who was taken out of here tonight,” Toronto manager John Farrell
White Sox third baseman Kevin Youkilis was the first player to
notice the activity in the stands, and alerted umpire Mark Wegner
to what was going on.
”I saw some medics jump out around the dugout and run over,”
Youkilis said. ”Then I saw a doctor or whoever was going, just
pushing on the chest over and over and over. I thought maybe they
were reviving him and then the next thing you know, they kept going
and going. I was like `God, man. We’ve got to stop this
Jesse Crain, who was on the mound at the time, was left shaken
by the episode.
”I said a little prayer for him after everything started going
again,” Crain said. ”You don’t ever want to see that.”
This is the second time this season a fan has received CPR at a
Blue Jays game. It also happened June 29.
Liriano (4-10) allowed two runs and three hits in 6 1-3 innings
to win for the first time since July 6 at Texas, while pitching for
Minnesota. The left-hander, who walked one and struck out six, was
traded to Chicago on July 28.
Liriano came in 0-3 with a 5.09 ERA in five career games against
Toronto, but kept the Blue Jays in check after a two-run, three-hit
second inning, retiring 13 straight batters in one stretch.
”It’s been kind of up and down the last month,” Liriano said.
”I felt pretty good tonight. Physically I feel very good.
Location-wise, pitching-wise, it was a good night.”
Crain got two outs, Brett Myers worked the eighth and Philip
Humber finished for Chicago.
Trailing 2-0 on Moises Sierra’s second home run, Chicago halved
the deficit in the third when Wise hit a one-out drive to right,
his fifth of the year and second in two days.
The White Sox took the lead in the fifth when Viciedo led off
with his 19th homer and second in two days, and Flowers followed
two pitches later with a towering drive into the fourth deck in
left, his fourth.
It was the fourth time this season the Blue Jays have allowed
back-to-back home runs.
Chicago broke it open with a four-run eighth. After Youkilis
singled and Adam Dunn walked, Rios drilled his 19th home run,
connecting off Darren Oliver. One out later, Ramirez launched a
second deck homer off Brandon Lyon, his sixth.
Aaron Laffey (3-4) allowed three runs and three hits, all
homers, in six innings to lose for the third time in four
”Tonight, as has been the case in this series, we were plagued
by the long ball,” Farrell said.
Blue Jays pitchers gave up 10 home runs in the four game
Toronto’s Edwin Encarnacion was scratched from the lineup with
pain in his left shoulder and wrist after a diving play in the
outfield Wednesday. Encarnacion has made just three appearances in
the outfield this season.
NOTES: Chicago’s last series win at Rogers Centre came when they
took two of three in August, 2006. … Toronto OF Jose Bautista
(left wrist) hit in the cage Wednesday and is expected to take
batting practice on the field Saturday and Sunday. If all goes
well, Bautista could begin a minor league rehab assignment Monday.
… Blue Jays 3B Brett Lawrie (strained right oblique) is expected
to begin a rehab assignment at Class-A Dunedin on Saturday and
could be activated off the DL in time to return Tuesday when
Toronto opens a three-game series at Detroit. … With Gordon
Beckham getting a day off and Orlando Hudson (toe) nursing an
injury, Ray Olmedo made his first start at second base since Sept.
30, 2006. Hudson left Wednesday’s game after fouling a ball off his
left foot. … Chicago OF Alejandro De Aza was given the day