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Sox put brakes on O’s

Published: Wednesday, July 3, 2013 12:05 a.m. CDT
Caption
(AP photo)
Conor Gillaspie (from left), Adam Dunn and Alexei Ramirez celebrate Tuesday night at U.S. Cellular Field after the White Sox defeated the Baltimore Orioles, 5-2.

CHICAGO – For one night, the White Sox had all facets of their game working together.

Adam Dunn and Conor Gillaspie homered while Gordon Beckham had three hits, John Danks pitched into the eighth inning and the Sox snapped the Baltimore Orioles’ four-game winning streak with a 5-2 victory Tuesday night.

Gillaspie’s homer snapped a 1-1 tie in the sixth, and Dunn’s 22nd, a two-run homer in the seventh, gave the Sox a 5-1 lead. Addison Reed pitched a scoreless ninth for his 22nd save in 26 attempts.

The Sox ended a five-game losing streak and avoided falling a season-worst 16 games below .500.

And the Sox managed to win by playing the kind of clean game they haven’t for most of the season.

The Sox made no errors, their bullpen was solid, the pitching was strong, and the offense produced. It all added up to a needed victory against one of baseball’s hottest teams.

“It’s nice,” Sox manager Robin Ventura said. “We’ve had some tough nights here the last few.”

The Sox have lost 23 of their past 32 and are in last place in the AL Central.

Danks (2-5), who earned his first win since beating Oakland on June 8, allowing two runs and six hits and seven innings with four strikeouts, knows what kind of hole the Sox have dug for themselves.

“We know how good we are. We know we’ve got a [heck] of a road ahead of us. We did it to ourselves,” Danks said. “But at the same time, we know how capable we are of going on a run. We just hope that we’re able to do it starting now. We know we’re running out of time.”

Baltimore took a 1-0 lead with one out in the third when Brian Roberts hit his first home run of the season after coming off the disabled list Sunday. Roberts’ homer, on Danks’ first pitch of the at-bat, was his first since April 13, 2011, against the Yankees.

That was all the production Baltimore got off the Sox until a run in the eighth.

The Sox’s offense gave Danks more than he needed.

The Sox tied the score in the bottom of the fourth on Beckham’s one-out single to left. The Sox took a 2-1 lead on Gillaspie’s one-out homer in the sixth.

The Sox scored three times in the seventh, capped by Dunn’s 427-foot, two-run homer. The homer was Dunn’s 428th of his career, passing Mike Piazza for 45th all time, and gave the Sox a 5-1 lead on the second of two homers off Jason Hammel (7-5).

Tuesday’s game capped a busy day for the Orioles, who acquired starting pitcher Scott Feldman and catcher Steve Clevenger from the Cubs for starter Jake Arrieta, reliever Pedro Strop, and two international signing bonus slots. Feldman, who signed a one-year deal with the Cubs last offseason and is 7-6 with a 3.46 ERA, is expected to start Wednesday for the Orioles.

Notes: The Sox signed 16-year-old Dominican outfielder Micker Adolfo Zapata to a contract that included a $1.6 million signing bonus, the largest in team history for an international signing. ... The Sox appointed former slugger Jim Thome to a position as special assistant to general manager Rick Hahn. Thome, who last played for Baltimore in 2012, will work with players at all levels throughout the organization.

... With Feldman pitching Wednesday against the Sox’s Hector Santiago (3-5, 3.59), the Orioles will start Zach Britton on Thursday and push Miguel Gonzalez to Friday in New York against the Yankees. ... Baltimore’s Wei-Yin Chen will make a rehab start Thursday for Double-A Bowie and the team hopes he will get to 90 pitches. Chen has been on the disabled list since May 14 with a strained right oblique.

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