It was a sunny, but chilly day at Sox Park as the White Sox took a pair of games from the AL East cellar-dwellers from Baltimore by 7-4 and 3-1 scores.
Baltimore got on the board first with the first of two homers from Freddy Galvis. The Sox got that run back immediately in the bottom of the first when Tim Anderson led off with a double and came around on Jose Abreu’s first RBI single of game one.
The MVP put the Sox up by a pair with a 2-run single to shallow right in the third, and he came around to score on Jake Lamb’s 2-run homer to right-center to cap off a four-run third inning to give the Sox a 5-1 lead.
Baltimore got two of those runs back in the fourth, and Galvis’ second homer of the game in the fifth trimmed the Sox lead to one.
But Yoan Moncada gave the Sox a little breathing room (and made the White Sox Golden Ale I was drinking in my seat down the right field line taste a little better) with a 2-run homer in the sixth.
Closer Liam Hendriks locked it down with a clean 7th inning to give the Sox their 30th win of the year to put them 10 games above .500 this season. Dallas Keuchel earned the win to improve to 4-1 on the year and Hendriks got his 11th save in the opener of the doubleheader.
Game two saw both starters take advantage of the shadows that crept over home plate and made the visuals for the hitters difficult, as neither team could mount much of a threat.
Noted slugger Billy Hamilton hit a solo homer in the 4th off O’s starter John Means to give the Sox a 1-0 lead, and the way Lance Lynn was throwing, you’d figure that would be enough.
The next inning, Abreu demolished a change-up from Means and deposited it deep in the left-field bleachers with a runner on to give the Sox a 3-0 lead. The dinger rated 7.5 poops on the Scatcast™ meter for Means.
Things got a little dicey for the Sox in the sixth when Baltimore loaded the bases off Aaron Bummer with nobody out, but they only got one run when Codi Heuer hit Stevie Wilkerson with a pitch to force in a run. A baserunning blunder by the Orioles on a flyout to center field (on which Billy Hamilton made a nice diving catch) prevented another run from scoring, and Hendriks had another perfect inning of work to earn his second save of the day, and 12th of the season as the Sox swept the twinbill to move to three games up on Cleveland, who was rained out Saturday.
After one more game Sunday at Sox Park against the O’s, the Sox head to Cleveland for a doubleheader Monday, followed by two more games Tuesday and Wednesday before coming back home to entertain the Tigers.