Liriano RBI lifts White Sox over Angels
CHICAGO — Once Tim Anderson saw the ball leave Rymer Liriano’s bat, he figured it was in his best interest to keep running until someone stopped him.
And once Anderson saw Los Angeles Angels left fielder Ben Revere throw to second base rather than to home, he never slowed up.
Anderson scored from first base on Liriano’s two-out RBI single that capped a three-run eighth inning as the Chicago White Sox rallied to beat the Angels 5-4 on Thursday night.
Liriano’s go-ahead single came after Rob Brantly tied the game in the eighth inning with a two-out, two-run homer off of reliever Jesse Chavez.
“The momentum was going our way,” Anderson said. “It was great for (Liriano) to hit a single and on my behalf was great for me to just keep running. We just had a lot of energy and the home run sparked it off.”
Once Brantly drew the White Sox even with his game-tying homer, it was Anderson’s aggressive base-running that spelled the difference.
“I didn’t want to slow down because I didn’t want to go to extras,” Anderson, the White Sox young star shortstop said.
Revere, for his part, figured Anderson would stop at third base. Instead of trying to make a play to throw Anderson out at home, he relayed a throw to second anticipating Liriano would keep running.
“They see me go to second, and the (White Sox) third base coach has (Anderson) going home and he can run,” Revere said. “I mean, you’re in a tough situation.”
Added Angels manager Mike Scioscia: “That long, unprotected throw to the cut-off man got us tonight.”
Juan Minaya pitched a scoreless ninth for his eighth save to preserve the victory for the White Sox in their home finale, which came a night after Chicago eliminated the Angels from postseason consideration with a walk-off win.
Gregory Infante (2-1) earned the victory for Chicago after he pitched a scoreless eighth inning before the White Sox came through with the three runs.
After Chavez (7-11) retired the first two hitters in the eighth, Avisail Garcia doubled before Brantly followed with his first homer of the season.
“Words can’t explain when you get in a situation like that,” Brantly said. “I was just looking to be somewhat productive on that at-bat, just looking to get on base.”
C.J. Cron’s sacrifice fly in the fifth inning gave the Angels a 4-2 lead. Cliff Pennington led off the inning with a double and advanced to third on an Albert Pujols fly out.
Eric Young Jr. gave the Angels a 3-0 lead in the fifth inning with a ground-rule double. The RBI hit scored Kaleb Cowart, who walked with one out after White Sox starter Dylan Covey had shut down the Angels for four innings.
Carlos Perez followed with a two-run homer that extended the lead to 3-0 before Covey induced a pair of ground balls to get out of the inning.
The White Sox got to within 3-2 in their half of the fifth. After Liriano and Adam Engel walked, Yolmer Sanchez followed with a two-run single.
But after falling behind by two runs, the White Sox rallied and continued to play a brand of no-quit baseball that has become a trademark of Rick Renteria’s club in his first year leading the White Sox.
Afterward, White Sox players returned to the field to salute the fans, who remained on their feet as Chicago finished the home slate of the regular season with back-to-back wins.
“I know we were down the whole ballgame, but you just keep playing the game,” Renteria said. “I don’t think they think too much about it other than when they have a moment they have to take advantage of.”
NOTES: Angels 3B Yunel Escobar was scheduled to play in an intrasquad game Thursday in Arizona and could see time this weekend with the Angels. Escobar has been out since Aug. 8 with an oblique strain. ... LHP Andrew Heaney was a candidate to start Thursday against the White Sox, but was shut down after the Angels were eliminated from playoff contention. Manager Mike Scioscia said there is no concern about the health of Heaney’s shoulder, which has been inflamed and has kept him sidelined for two weeks. ... White Sox LHP Carlos Rodon underwent arthroscopic surgery on his left shoulder Wednesday, general manager Rick Hahn announced Thursday. The surgery showed bursitis, but no damage to the labrum or biceps. Hahn said Rodon will need 6-8 months to recover, but is expected to make a full recovery. Rodon missed almost two months with bursitis to begin the season.