Rookie-laden Indians double up White Sox
While the Cleveland Indians celebrated a rare road triumph delivered by a bunch of rookies, White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen was furious with his flailing team.
Chris Gimenez and Luis Valbuena hit consecutive home runs off former Cleveland ace Bartolo Colon and the Indians beat Chicago 8-4 on Sunday, handing the White Sox their fifth loss in six games.
"It's so disappointing when you play like that," Guillen said. "It takes the wind out of you. We don't know what to do. Everything we try doesn't work. Maybe if I go crazy with the media and (rip) my team ... I might wake them up. But it's wasting my time."
The White Sox have been outscored 35-17 in going 2-5 on a homestand that concludes with a five-game series against first-place Detroit. The defending AL Central champions, who are 4 1/2 games behind the Tigers and only 2 1/2 games ahead of last-place Cleveland, are 2 for 39 with runners in scoring position in their last six games.
Chicago had a chance to get back into Sunday's game in the eighth but couldn't put together a big rally. Ramon Castro walked with the bases loaded and nobody out to cut it to 8-4 but Rafael Perez struck out Brian Anderson and Jayson Nix before retiring Gordon Beckham on a diving catch by center fielder Trevor Crowe.
"We had a great opportunity ... and we did what we do best: strike out," Guillen said, adding that "a good percent" of his players are choking under pressure. The manager then left the interview room spewing expletives about his team.
Rookie David Huff (1-2) allowed three runs - all on Alexei Ramirez's homer - in five innings to earn his first career victory.
Gimenez, Valbuena and Huff are playing because the Indians have been decimated by injuries. They currently have eight players on the disabled list.
"Those guys did great," said Jamey Carroll, who doubled twice, singled and drove in two runs. "To see those guys come up and have success like that, it kind of energizes you. You can have some fun."
The Indians hadn't been having much fun on the road. They are 13-20 away from Cleveland and this was only the second road series they've won all season.
"Anytime you take two of three on the opponents' turf, it's huge," said Gimenez, who has homered in each of his two games since being called up from the minors. "We're really trying to climb back into the race. Everyone knows we're not out of it yet."
Valbuena's homer was the first of his career. Victor Martinez and Shin-Soo Choo also hit back-to-back homers as Colon (3-6) was booed repeatedly by the home crowd. Colon, who won 75 games for the Indians from 1997 to 2002, has allowed 12 homers in 11 starts this season.
Cleveland has hit consecutive home runs on five occasions this season, including three times in this three-game series.
Huff was the 11th starter the White Sox have faced for the first time this season. Those pitchers are a combined 8-1 with a 1.79 ERA against Chicago.
"We just need to bring a little more intensity, a little more energy, to the table," Chicago's Scott Podsednik said. "Right now, it's kind of a dead period for us.
"It's frustrating, and it's easy for clubs to kind of get sucked into it and come to the ballpark without that swagger and energy you need. We've got Detroit coming in. We'll try to come to the ballpark refreshed."
Colon became the first pitcher to allow back-to-back homers twice in a game since Detroit's Nate Robertson on Aug. 20 at Texas, according to the Elias Sports Bureau. ... White Sox RHP Jose Contreras, demoted to the minors last month with an 0-5 record and 8.19 ERA, will return to the rotation for Monday's doubleheader nightcap. ... Cleveland pitchers walked eight and lead the majors with 243 walks. ... After coming off the DL on Friday and playing two straight games, Indians DH Travis Hafner got the day off. He is hitless in 15 career at-bats against Colon. ... White Sox RF Jermaine Dye returned after serving a two-game suspension for spiking his helmet and arguing with an umpire. He went 0 for 3, including a double-play grounder that let Huff escape a first-inning jam.