Rapid Reaction: White Sox 8, Indians 1
September, 8, 2011
By Doug Padilla | ESPNChicago.com
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.