Long ball sinks Cubs as Sox complete sweep at U.S. Cellular

 

 

CHICAGO – Sweep revenge for the White Sox against the Cubs.

Carlos Quentin, Brian Anderson and Jim Thome homered to back Mark Buehrle’s seven strong innings Sunday night as the White Sox completed a three-game sweep at U.S. Cellular Field by beating the Cubs 5-1.

The White Sox won three straight at their home park, one week after the Cubs took three in a row across town at Wrigley Field.

Cubs manager Lou Piniella wasn’t around for most of his team’s eighth loss in 12 games. He was ejected for the first time this season after arguing an appeal call on a checked swing in the second inning.

Thome’s 15th homer, a two-run blast in the eighth off reliever Jose Ascanio, was his 522nd, moving him past Ted Williams and Willie McCovey into sole possession of 16th place all-time.

The Cubs threatened in the ninth after a walk and a double by Mark DeRosa. But Jim Edmonds lined to White Sox first baseman Nick Swisher who threw to second to double off DeRosa and douse the threat. Daryle Ward then grounded out to end the game.

The White Sox swept three from the Cubs for only the second time – the first came at Wrigley Field in 1999, two years after interleague play began.

This season the two rivals met as first-place teams for the first time in interleague play and are still atop their respective divisions. The Cubs’ lead in the NL Central was sliced to 21/2 games with the loss and the White Sox are 11/2 ahead in the AL Central.

Buehrle (6-6) won his fourth straight decision, allowing six hits and an unearned run in seven innings in a matchup of lefties with the Cubs’ Sean Marshall (0-2). Marshall gave up three runs and five hits in seven innings, two of them homers.

Quentin, who hit the go-ahead homer Saturday in the White Sox’s 6-5 win, connected for his 19th leading off the fourth to make it 1-0.

Anderson’s fourth homer was a two-run shot in the fifth that just carried over the fence in left center and gave Buehrle a three-run cushion.

The Cubs broke through in the seventh after DeRosa’s ground ball went through third baseman Joe Crede’s legs for an error. After Edmonds singled and Henry Blanco filed out, Ronny Cedeno delivered a two-out RBI single before Buehrle struck out Kosuke Fukudome with two on.

Piniella was ejected after protesting an appeal call from first base umpire Chad Fairchild. When Crede had a check swing at a potential third strike, an appeal was made to Fairchild, who ruled no swing and a ball. That brought Piniella out of the dugout yelling in Fairchild’s direction. Home plate umpire Rob Drake ejected Piniella, who then began arguing with Drake.

Crew chief Jeff Kellogg came down from third to try to settle the situation. Piniella, known throughout his career for tantrums against umpires, left the field but not before waving at Fairchild and making another angry comment in his direction.

With runners at second and third and no outs, Crede ended up striking out and Marshall retired the next two batters to escape the jam.