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Thursday, July 4, 2013
Rapid Reaction: White Sox 3, Orioles 2

By Doug Padilla



CHICAGO -- The White Sox took the series finale 3-2 on Thursday with a victory over the Baltimore Orioles.

How it happened: Adam Dunn hit a game-ending home run in the bottom of the ninth, his 23rd on the season. Dunn’s fielding error in the eighth inning opened the door for the Orioles to tie the game with two runs. Jose Quintana was dominating, striking out a career-best 11 while giving up just two hits over seven innings. His previous career high was eight nearly a year to the day (July 5) against the Rangers. Alex Rios and Dunn had RBI singles in the sixth inning off Orioles starter Zach Britton

What it means: Starting pitching has been spectacular at times and yet often ends up with nothing to show for it. Quintana was involved in is seventh consecutive no-decision, while Chris Sale hasn’t won since May 17 despite being dominating at times. Quintana’s effort was the sixth time a White Sox pitcher had struck out 10 or more batters in an outing. Quintana retired the final 13 batters he faced Thursday, eight by strikeout. Sale has four of the White Sox’s double-digit strikeout efforts, including three of those over his past four outings.

Outside the box: As good as June was for Dunn, he is threatening to make July even better. The White Sox have played only three games in July, but Dunn has an RBI in each of them to go along with two home runs. In June, Dunn batted .274 with a .991 OPS and had nine home runs to go along with 24 RBIs. Thursday was his first game-ending home run with White Sox and ninth of his career. His last was in 2010 for the Washington Nationals against the Philadelphia Phillies.

Offbeat: The White Sox won a game in walk-off fashion for the third consecutive Fourth of July. In 2011, they beat the Royals in the bottom of the ninth inning when A.J. Pierzynski scored on a balk. Last season, they beat the Rangers on Kevin Youkilis’ hit in the bottom of the 10th inning.

Up next: The White Sox will send right-hander Dylan Axelrod (3-4, 4.57 ERA) to the mound Friday against Tampa Bay in the opener of a three-game series. The Rays will counter with right-hander Jeremy Hellickson (7-3, 4.90) in the 6:10 p.m. CST time start from Tropicana Field.