CLEVELAND, Ohio – Adam Eaton delivered the knockout blow with a two-run homerun to James Karinchak in the eighth inning as the White Sox inflicted an 8-6 loss to Cleveland in Game 1 of a doubles program on Monday in the Progressive Field.
Jose Abreu’s RBI sacrifice in the eighth marked automatic racer Billy Hamilton with the go-ahead for Chicago. The Indians scored their automatic runner, Harold Ramirez, on a floor double play from Josh Naylor in the bottom of the eighth.
The loss marred a record-breaking start by Indians right-hander Triston McKenzie, and a two-homer game by Cesar Hernandez. McKenzie locked on after a tough second inning and found his lead to the tune of 10 strikeouts and just four hits allowed in his longest outing of the year.
Indians manager Terry Francona said McKenzie wasn’t disheartened when he gave a walk or gave up a hit, coming back with some of his best stuff after a misstep.
“He missed a few sticks, he threw a good curve ball, he attacked with a fastball and got it by their barrel for the most part,” said Francona. “What we see is when he walks around, he doesn’t turn it into two or three. He comes together and he comes back and uses his best tricks. It’s a big step for him.
McKenzie struck out Jake Lamb on catches in the third and finished the set with a sniff of Abreu. It started a streak of eight straight punches by the club-record right-hander who was one short of the American League mark (9) held by Detroit’s Doug Fister.
McKenzie broke the seven-year-old Cleveland record set by Corey Kluber against the White Sox on May 4, 2014, when he again fanned Lamb before the sixth. Yoan Moncada followed with a right single that ended McKenzie’s day after a season-high 5-1 / 3 innings.
McKenzie said he was successful because he was ahead of the batters in the count.
“My fastball was working in the zone, the curved ball down, my cursor was working too,” McKenzie said. “It was just to let them guess and I attribute a lot to René (Rivera).”
Bryan Shaw relieved McKenzie and walked a pair as Moncada scored on the choice of an RBI outfielder by Yermin Mercedes who put Chicago in the lead, 5-4. But the Indians responded in the bottom of the sixth, when Josh Naylor hit a single and advanced to third on a goal struck by Rivera. Bradley Zimmer had a hit in the infield with two strikeouts as Naylor scored the tie.
Francona said Naylor stayed on the ball and went the other way against White Sox starter Carlos Rodon. Both of his singles were over the head of shortstop Anderson. But with two runners on base in the eighth against Chicago southpaw Aaron Bummer, Naylor shot the ball down and in a double play.
“That’s how you play against a southpaw,” Francona said. “On his last strike against Bummer he lined the ball up along the line which was great. Then he got a little nervous and pulled the cursor.
The Indians wasted no time jumping all over Rodon in the first one. Back-to-back home runs from Cesar Hernandez and Amed Rosario gave McKenzie a 2-0 lead and marked the first time the Indian hitters have gone deep to start a game since Francisco Lindor and Michael Brantley in September 2018. run was his third of the season and the 16th of his career. He notched his second homer of the game against Rodon on the first pitch he saw on the third, marking his first of several career homers.
But McKenzie gave the lead early on in a four-point second in Chicago. The White Sox got a walk by Mercedes and three consecutive hits, including a brace from Zack Collins.
Chicago added a fourth inning when Anderson, who had walked, found himself caught in a tally between the first and the second that got Collins to score from the third.
Cleveland reduced the White Sox’s lead to one point in the fourth when Naylor scored with two outs and scored on Yu Chang’s RBI double down center-right.
Following: Game 2 of today’s doubles program is scheduled to begin at 6:35 p.m. with Indian right-hander Cal Quantrill (0-1, 2.03) on the mound. The White Sox will find right-hander Jimmy Lambert (0-0, 0.00). The game will air on WTAM 1100 AM, WMMS 100.7 FM, Bally Sports Great Lakes and Indians Radio Network.
New Indian masks for sale: Here’s where you can purchase Cleveland Indian-themed face covers for coronavirus protection, including a single mask ($ 14.99) and a 3-pack ($ 24.99). All MLB profits are donated to charity.
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