The third baseman doubled home shortstop Alexi Ramirez with a
go-ahead run in the 12th inning Monday, leading the Chicago White
Sox to a 3-1 victory over the Chicago Cubs in the opener of a
two-game interleague series at Wrigley Field.
"Late innings, he's a tough hitter," White Sox manager Robin Ventura
said. "He stays in there, hangs in there no matter what's happened
earlier (in a game). ... But you get some guys on base, he's been
able to come through."
The White Sox started the winning rally after the Cubs struck out
the first two batters of the 12th. Ramirez singled and stole second
After catcher Tyler Flowers walked, Semien doubled to left off Cubs
right-hander Justin Grimm (1-1).
"I try to do the same thing every time, sometimes it works like
that," Semien said. "I like to put good at-bats at all points in the
game, but right now it happened that way."
Flowers stopped at third base on the go-ahead play. Pinch hitter
Paul Konerko then was hit by a pitch, loading the bases, and Grimm
walked center fielder Alejandro De Aza to force in an insurance run.
White Sox right-hander Matt Lindstrom allowed a hit and a walk in
the bottom of the inning but still closed out his fifth save of the
Daniel Webb (3-0) got the last out in the 11th to earn the win.
Neither starter factored into a decision in a pitchers' duel on a
"Conditions were not very nice," Ventura said. "I can sympathize
with guys going to the plate trying to hit it. And with the wind
blowing in, it was just tough to be able to score. We had some
opportunities, and Jeff (Samardzija) just shut us down."
Samardzija, the Cubs' ace right-hander, worked nine innings-- his
longest outing of the season -- and allowed one unearned run on
three hits while striking out seven and walking two.
He was determined to work as long as he could, and he ended up
throwing a career-high 126 pitches.
"I was pretty hungry for that one," Samardzija said. "It was a tough
day for the hitters to hit, and I knew if I could get them back in
there maybe we could get something together and get it going.
"It was a great game to pitch in, it was a great atmosphere. It was
fun to be out there."
White Sox left-handed starter Jose Quintana threw 95 pitches over
seven innings, allowing one run on one hit and three walks. He
struck out three.
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White Sox first baseman Jose Abreu, announced earlier Monday as
American League Player and Rookie of the Month, knocked in the
game's first run with first inning sacrifice fly.
Quintana, who didn't allow a hit through five innings, gave up a
leadoff double to Samardzija in the sixth that turned into the tying
Samardzija advanced to third on leadoff batter Emilio Bonifacio's
sacrifice bunt and scored on left fielder Junior Lake's sacrifice
fly to left.
Quintana was pulled for pinch hitter Jordan Danks in the eighth.
In the ninth, Samardzija walked Abreu and left fielder Adam Dunn
with one out but got shortstop Alexei Ramirez to ground into an
inning-ending double play.
The Cubs had left fielder Chris Coghlan on second base with two outs
in the 11th, but shortstop Starlin Castro ended the inning by
striking out against Webb.
Ramirez's single off Grimm was his 1,000th career hit.
Abreu gave the White Sox a 1-0 lead in the first with a sacrifice
fly to right, scoring De Aza. The center fielder singled to open the
game and reached third on an error by third baseman Mike Olt.
NOTES: White Sox LHP Chris Sale (flexor muscle strain in left arm)
threw 40 pitches in a bullpen session Monday, but he isn't likely to
come off the disabled list for the foreseeable future. ... The White
Sox lead the all-time series with the Cubs 50-45. The series is
24-24 at Wrigley Field. The Cubs swept all four games last year. ...
Monday's game was the earliest the teams have played since
interleague play debuted in 1997 and possibly the coldest. Game-time
temperature was 41 degrees with 12 mph winds making it feel like 34
degrees. ... Cubs RHP Edwin Jackson (2-2, 5.24 ERA) faces his former
team Tuesday, squaring off against White Sox RHP Hector Noesi (0-2,
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