Four-run fourth hangs White Sox out to dry

447029.jpg

Four-run fourth hangs White Sox out to dry

Saturday, April 16, 2011
Posted: April 15, 10:48 p.m. Updated: 12:19 a.m.

Associated Press

Caught in a rain delay but not ready to leave the game, Jered Weaver had to improvise.

After play was halted in the sixth inning, Weaver put some heat packs on his arm, threw his No. 42 jersey in the dryer because there wasn't a spare around, then played catch in the hallway outside the clubhouse.

When Weaver came back, he wasn't as sharp as before, but he - with some help from the Angels' bullpen - was good enough to lead Los Angeles to a 4-3 win over the Chicago White Sox on Friday night

"That was kind of weird," Weaver said. "You can have a half-hour inning sometimes. It wasn't too bad. Just came up here and tried to stay warm."

Weaver stayed in the game, but gave up a two-run homer to Adam Dunn just two batters after retaking the mound.

"He doesn't miss many mistakes and that was a mistake on my part," Weaver said. "He put it where he should have. That's what he does."

The Angels bullpen extended its scoreless streak to 25 13 innings behind Weaver (4-0) to seal the win.

Fernando Rodney worked out of trouble with two on and one out in the eighth and Jordan Walden worked a perfect ninth to preserve the win for Weaver, the first in the majors to reach four wins.

"We've got some guys who can throw the heck of the ball," Weaver said. "I'll take any of those guys coming in after me and they were able to get the job done tonight."

Maicer Izturis had three hits and drove in two runs Friday to help Angels win their third straight and seventh in the last nine games.

Weaver (4-0) allowed three runs on four hits to earn the win. Two of the runs were earned. The 2010 strikeout leader added four to his 2011 total and leads the majors with 31 this season.

Filling in for the injured Jake Peavy, Phil Humber (1-1) took the loss for Chicago. He was charged with four runs over his five innings of work, but only two of the runs were earned. Humber struck out four and gave up six hits, but was hit hard all night.

"It was a battle," he said. "I didn't have control of most of my pitches for the most part."

Weaver retired the first six batters he faced, but found trouble in the third inning. He hit A.J. Pierzynski in the back on a 1-2 pitch to lead off and Alexei Ramirez blooped a single into shallow center field to put runners on first and second.

Brent Morel then botched a bunt, popping out to catcher Hank Conger. Juan Pierre followed with a fly out to left field, but Weaver couldn't escape unscathed. Gordon Beckham ripped a 1-1 pitch into left field to drive in Pierzynski. Weaver rebounded to strike out Dunn for the second time.

The Angels responded immediately with a four-run fourth. After a one-out walk to Vernon Wells and a single by Alberto Callaspo, Humber allowed an RBI single to Mark Trumbo. Conger then grounded softly to third with runners on first and third, but a wide throw by Morel allowed a run to score and set the stage for a two-run double off the bat of Izturis, his third hit in four innings, to give Los Angeles a 4-1 lead.

In addition to the delay in the sixth, there was a brief pause in the ninth as the Angels took the field for the bottom half.

Players briefly took shelter in the dugout, but reappeared just a minute later, before the grounds crew could take out the tarp, and began warming up again. Play resumed after just a three-minute delay.

"That's April baseball. You go on the road, you don't know what the elements are going to bring," Angels manager Mike Scioscia said.

NOTES

In honor of Jackie Robinson Day, Robinson's granddaughter, Sonia Pankey, threw out the first pitch. ... Angels RHP Joel Pineiro (right shoulder tendinitis) threw a 30-pitch bullpen session in Arizona Friday. "He still has work to do," Scioscia said. ... Angels LHP Scott Kazmir (lower back soreness) is working out in Houston but will join the team Monday for a three-game series in Arlington against the Texas Rangers. ... White Sox LHP Will Ohman struck out Izturis with the bases loaded and two out in the eighth.

Box Score
Copyright 2011 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Jose Abreu ready for 2017 after season full of 'different challenges'

Jose Abreu ready for 2017 after season full of 'different challenges'

GLENDALE, Ariz. — A torrid two months at the plate helped Jose Abreu end what he found to be an extremely trying 2016 season with numbers close to his career norms.

But even though he finished with an .820 OPS and 100 RBIs for a third straight season, Abreu admits that 2016 was a season unlike any other he'd faced.

While he didn't disclose any theories for the cause of his lengthy struggles, the White Sox first baseman said Sunday he's pleased to have finished on a positive note and thinks that rebounding from those difficulties will only make him stronger. Abreu — who hit .293/.353/.468 with 25 home runs and 100 RBIs in 695 plate appearances — is also a fan of new White Sox manager Rick Renteria and is equally impressed with the prospects the club acquired this winter.

"Yes, those were different challenges, especially in my mind," Abreu said through an interpreter. "I never in my life experienced some of the kind of struggles like I did last year. But that put me in a better position as a player, as a person too. I'm in a better position now for this season because I learned from the experience."

In spite of his struggles, Abreu was still a league average player through the first four months of the season. But the 2014 All-Star hardly resembled the player who produced a 153 OPS-plus over his first two seasons. His timing was off and Abreu — hitting .269/.325/.413 with 11 homers and 56 RBIs through July 30 — wasn't driving the ball as he typically had in his first two seasons, when he smacked 66 homers.

Abreu was lost at the plate and nobody could figure out why.

But after the arrival of his son, Dariel, who visited him for the first time since he moved to the United States, Abreu took off. He hit .338/.402/.568 the rest of the season with 14 homers and 44 RBIs in 249 trips to the plate.

"Right after last season ended, I had my meeting at my house with my family, just to explain to them how the season was because they know about baseball," Abreu said. "But sometimes they can't register how the process is in a season as long as the major league season is. We talked about it. I explained to them all of the challenges, the problems I had during that season. Once we ended with that meeting, last season was in the past. We moved on and we were trying just to figure out things and how can I do better for this season."

Now in his fourth season in the majors, Abreu has a firm grasp on how the White Sox operate and likes some of the team's modifications. He likes how Renteria thoroughly communicates what he has in mind for the club. Abreu also enjoys being seen as one of the team's leaders and wouldn't mind being a mentor to prized prospect Yoan Moncada.

Now he hopes to carry over his strong finish to the start of the 2017 campaign.

"I'm working on it," Abreu said. "That's one of my goals. Everybody knows that at the beginning of last season, I wasn't performing good. It was kind of a surprise for me, too. But I'm in good shape right now and I believe I will be able to succeed."

White Sox rookie Charlie Tilson out at least 10 days with foot injury

White Sox rookie Charlie Tilson out at least 10 days with foot injury

GLENDALE, Ariz. -- The leading candidate to be the team’s starting center fielder, Charlie Tilson has been temporarily shut down after suffering a stress reaction in his right foot.

The White Sox rookie said Sunday that he noticed the injury gradually building up before he decided to stop his workout on Friday and headed for the training room. An MRI performed Saturday on Tilson -- who is rehabbing from a torn left hamstring that ended his 2016 season early -- revealed the reaction, which isn’t severe as a stress fracture. Given Tilson previously had a stress fracture in his right foot, the White Sox said he'll be sidelined from impact work for 10 days, at which point he’d be re-evaluated.

“It started very minimal, and I tried to work through it a little bit, and by the time I addressed Herm, thankfully I caught it before it was anything that would keep me out for too long,” Tilson said. “It’s a minor thing, and it will give my other leg a chance to get stronger in the meantime, and hopefully we’ll turn this negative into a positive.”

Tilson wouldn’t be surprised if his injury is related to overcompensating for his left leg, which he has worked tirelessly to rehab since he suffered the injury on Aug. 2 and then had season-ending surgery. Manager Rick Renteria described it as an “irritation” in the area where Tilson suffered a stress fracture in 2013. In the interim, the White Sox will test some of their other options in camp, including veteran Peter Bourjos and minor leaguers Adam Engel and Jacob May, among others.

“But we don’t foresee it to be a long-term issue,” Renteria said. “By being able to shut him down now, it’ll be something he’ll be able to recover from. We’ll just readjust his timetable.”

Minor as Tilson and the White Sox say it is, the outfielder admitted he’s down about having to deal with it after the progress he’d made in his rehab.

The White Sox acquired the New Trier High School product from the St. Louis Cardinals last July in exchange for left-hander Zach Duke. Tilson was immediately called up as the White Sox intended to try him out in center field the rest of the season. But he suffered a season-ending injury in his major league debut while tracking down a fly ball and had surgery several days later.

Tilson made enough progress to be a full participant in a hitter’s camp at Camelback Ranch last month. Earlier this week, White Sox general manager Rick Hahn said Tilson was a top candidate to take over as the club’s starting center fielder if he was healthy.

“I guess you could say I’m disappointed,” Tilson said. “But it’s a very minor setback and it’s part of the process. I had a major repair, and these things come up and hopefully we can minimize them as much as we can and hopefully this is the last one. But I’m just going to deal with it and do whatever I can to move forward.”