Rapid Reaction: White Sox 8, Indians 1

September, 8, 2011
9/08/11
10:30
PM CT
Padilla By Doug Padilla
ESPNChicago.com
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CHICAGO -- The White Sox poured it on late in an 8-1 series-opening victory Thursday against the Cleveland Indians.

How it happened: Brent Morel nearly doubled his home run total in a single night going deep twice to power the victory. Paul Konerko added a grand slam in a seven-run seventh inning. Morel’s four RBIs were a career high. He hit a solo shot to center to tie the game 1-1 in the third inning and hit a three-run shot to left in the seventh for his fifth of the season. Gavin Floyd pitched well, giving up only a run in the first inning and nothing else, although his day ended at 5 2/3 innings with a high pitch count.

What it means: Morel has occasional power, showing it last season when he hit three home runs after his Sept. 1 call-up, but it hasn’t been on display much this season. Overall, Morel’s season has been about as expected with solid defense and a .255 batting average heading into Thursday’s game, but he got a more scrutiny for it than expected because the other hitting struggles in the lineup.

Outside the box: Konerko’s grand slam was the 10th with the White Sox, tying Robin Ventura’s club record.

Up next: White Sox left-hander Mark Buehrle (11-7, 3.34 ERA) will take the mound Friday against Cleveland. He will be opposed by Indians right-hander Jeanmar Gomez (2-2, 4.11) in the 7:10 p.m. start from U.S. Cellular Field.

Doug Padilla

Chicago White Sox beat reporter
Doug joined ESPN Chicago in July 2010 and covers the Chicago White Sox for ESPNChicago.com and ESPN Radio 1000.

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TEAM LEADERS

BA LEADER
Jose Abreu
BA HR RBI R
.317 36 107 80
OTHER LEADERS
HRJ. Abreu 36
RBIJ. Abreu 107
RA. Ramirez 82
OPSJ. Abreu .964
WC. Sale 12
ERAC. Sale 2.17
SOC. Sale 208