Grand Opening

Saturday, May 10, 2014


Today’s News

Tonight’s Game

White Sox vs. Diamondbacks at U.S Cellular Field (6:05 p.m., CT, CSN). Starters: LHPJose Quintana (1-2, 3.56) for the Sox, LHP Wade Miley (2-3, 5.14) for Arizona.

Sox Starting Lineup: Beckham 2B, Semien 3B, Abreu DH, Viciedo LF, Ramirez SS, Konerko 1B, Sierra RF, Flowers C, De Aza CF.

Plays of the Day

With our first nine batters set down in order by former White Sox righty Brandon McCarthy, we exploded in the fourth inning last night with seven of our nine runs and nine of our 15 hits in the 9-3 victory over Arizona in the series opener. The inning was highlighted by Alexei Ramirez‘s fifth homer of the year and sixth career grand slam (click on top link below), his first since 2009…Jose Abreu, who went 3-4, added to his major-league leading home run total in the seventh with his 13th (click on bottom link) and in the eighth Tyler Flowers connected with his second blast of the year. Both were solo shots…Alejandro De Aza went 3-5 with an RBI and a run scored…Andre Rienzo improved his record to 3-0, allowing three runs, four hits and a pair of walks along with three strikeouts in 5.2 innings…Zach Putnam (1.1 IP), Ron Belisario (1.0) and Matt Lindstrom (1.0) closed it out in perfect form.    

Quirk of the Day

The Ramirez and Abreu homers both were hit on 3-0 counts.

Sox Notes of Note

The White Sox rank among the American League leaders in runs scored (1st, 193), runs per game (1st, 5.22), extra-base hits (2nd, 119), homers (3rd, 40) and slugging percentage (4th, .426)…the Sox have won five of the last six games and last night matched a season-high four consecutive games of 10 or more hits…the Sox also lead the American League with 18 double-digit hit games…we are hitting .338 with five homers and 27 runs scored over the last four games and batting .354 with RISP during that period…Sox relievers own a 1.57 ERA over the last 13 games and a 2.06 mark and .175 opponents average since April 20…Just a reminder: as we posted yesterday, Robin Ventura will miss tonight’s game to attend the graduation of his daughter, Rachel, from Oklahoma State. Bench coach Mark Parent will serve as interim manager.

Francisco Promoted, Cleto Designated for Assignment

Before tonight’s game, the Sox purchased the contract of right-hander Frank Francisco from Class AAA Charlotte and designated right-handed pitcher Maikel Cleto for assignment.

Francisco, 34, is 0-0 with a 0.00 ERA (8.0 IP), one save and 12 strikeouts in six relief appearances with Charlotte this season after signing with the White Sox as a minor-league free agent on April 14.  His last five outings have been scoreless (7.0 IP) after allowing an unearned run in his season debut.  He is limiting opponents to a .154 average (4-26).

Francisco, a native of Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, is 20-22 with a 3.93 ERA (167 ER/382.2 IP), 73 saves, 67 holds and 421 strikeouts in 387 appearances (all in relief) over nine major-league seasons with Texas (2004, 2006-10), Toronto (2011) and the New York Mets (2012-13).

The 6-foot-2, 245-pound Francisco has averaged 9.90 strikeouts per 9.0 IP in his career, including a career-best 11.79 mark (83 SO/63.1 IP) with Texas in 2008.  He has limited opponents to a .233 average (337-1,449) during his career, including a .231 mark (175-759) vs. right-handers. 

He originally was signed by Boston as a non-drafted free agent on December 15, 1996 and was acquired by the White Sox in a trade with the Red Sox on July 31, 2002. He was traded to Texas in a deal involving Carl Everett on July 1, 2003.

White Sox Volunteer Corps at Work

Adam Eaton pitches in today at the Tilden Career Academy during the White Sox Volunteer Corps’ first day of service in 2014. Marcus Semien and Don Cooper also were on hand.


Heartwarming Reunion

Talk about a memorable ceremonial first pitch. See what happened before last night’s game between our Charlotte affiliate and Buffalo.


A Berry Happy Birthday

Ken Berry, one of the finest defensive outfielders to ever wear a Sox uniform, is 73 today. Berry played for the Sox from 1962-70, was an All-Star in 1967 and won two gold gloves in a 14-year major-league career. Some also will remember him from his cameo in the movie, Eight Men Out, as he played the role of a leather-lunged fan.


Quote of the Day

Jim Thome — who knows a long ball when he sees one — was in the ballpark last night when Abreu hit his bomb into the shrubbery in dead center field.

“He still has a way to go,” Thome deadpanned when the baseball operations suite erupted with Abreu’s 442-foot blow.

Sox fans will remember two of Thome’s mighty blasts that made it onto the main concourse in center field, one measured at 464 and the second, the monstrous 461 home run that sealed the 1-0 playoff-clinching win for the Sox in 2008.

“I love it,” Jimmy said, clapping his hands.


Tomorrow’s Schedule

White Sox vs. Diamondbacks at U.S. Cellular Field (1:10 p.m., CT, CSN) in the finale of the three-game series. Probable starters: RHP Hector Noesi  (0-2, 8.27) for the Sox and RHP Chase Anderson, who will be making his first career start, for Arizona.

Photo of the Day

Celebrating victory.


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