MLB: White Sox rout A’s with HRs from Quentin, Konerko
GLENDALE, Ariz. (AP) – All of a sudden, the Chicago White Sox lineup broke loose.
Carlos Quentin had four hits, including a homer, and drove in four runs Friday to power Chicago to an 18-1 rout of the Oakland Athletics.
Quentin singled and doubled twice, but he wasn’t the only White Sox hitter who had a big day. Paul Konerko homered and drove in three runs, and Gordon Beckham had three hits, three RBIs and scored four runs. Tyler Flowers added a two-run homer in the eighth.
Konerko and Quentin hit consecutive homers to start the third. Chicago sent 11 batters to the plate in the fourth to open a 14-1 cushion.
“Yesterday I had people all over me because we only had three hits,” manager Ozzie Guillen said. “Then today we score (18) so all of a sudden they say, ‘Save it for the season.”‘
The White Sox jumped out to a 3-1 lead in the first on two-out RBI singles by Konerko, Quentin and Alexei Ramirez. A three-run homer by Beckham in the second extended it to 6-1.
John Danks pitched six solid innings for Chicago, yielding four hits and a run while striking out four. But the most important statistic was the number in the walk column: zero.
“This is the biggest step toward being ready, results-wise,” he said. “I threw all four pitches for strikes.”
The left-hander had walked eight batters through his first 10 1-3 innings in Cactus League play.
“Hopefully, the pitching we’ve been throwing out there carries over and the offense carries over,” Danks said.
Oakland starter Bobby Cramer gave up eight runs and nine hits (including three homers) over three innings. Josh Willingham had an RBI single in the first for the A’s.
Cramer tweaked his back in the first inning as he picked off Ramirez at first base for the third out. Cramer said it wasn’t anything serious, but the injury still took its toll.
“I felt like I had a chance on every pitch in the first inning,” he said. “First pitch of the second inning on, I didn’t feel right. I couldn’t finish, didn’t have my legs under me. I felt like I was fighting myself.”
Cramer said it’s a recurring problem that he battles through from time to time.
Vying for a spot in the starting rotation, he was having a great spring with a 3.00 ERA through four appearances.
“I’m not that guy who can afford to have a (bad) outing like I had today. I have to pitch my (rear end) off every time,” he said. “I’ve never had a game like that at any level. That was embarrassing.”
Phil Humber pitched three hitless innings for a save.
NOTES: Oakland CF Coco Crisp left the game due to tightness in his left hamstring, but immediately tweeted that he isn’t concerned and expects to play Saturday. Crisp leads the team with 16 hits this spring. … White Sox RHP Jake Peavy was in the clubhouse after being absent the previous two days with flu symptoms. Peavy still expects to make his scheduled start Saturday, but Guillen said the team would monitor him very closely.