Sandoval’s homer ends slump, helps beat White Sox
CHICAGO — San Francisco Giants third baseman Pablo Sandoval snapped an 0-for-39 skid with a three-run home run in the fourth inning Friday, helping the Giants defeat the Chicago White Sox 9-2 in the opener of an interleague weekend series.
The Giants (56-87) handed the White Sox (54-86) their eighth loss in 10 games behind a sound outing from left-hander Matt Moore. Temporarily sent to the bullpen after his most recent start, Moore returned to the rotation with 6 2/3 innings of two-run, five-hit ball to improve to 5-13.
Lucas Giolito (2-2) took the loss for Chicago after allowing five runs — three earned — and three hits in 5 1/3 innings. Giolito earned his first major league ejection as he walked toward the dugout upon exiting the game, as home plate umpire Gabe Morales took exception to something Giolito said. White Sox manager Rick Renteria was ejected moments later.
White Sox right fielder Avisail Garcia provided the biggest blemish against Moore when he smacked the first pitch of his fourth-inning at-bat into the stands for a two-run home run. But Moore retained his composure after that. The White Sox loaded the bases against Moore with two outs in the seventh inning before reliever Cory Gearrin ended the threat by inducing Jose Abreu to ground out to Sandoval.
The Giants put the game out of reach with three runs in the ninth inning. Denard Span hit a solo home run before catcher Nick Hundley, celebrating his 34th birthday, smacked a two-run single.
Brandon Crawford had three hits for the Giants, while Adam Engel had two hits for the White Sox.
During the game, the White Sox announced that left-hander Carlos Rodon would be placed on the 10-day disabled list with inflammation in his throwing shoulder and would not pitch again this season. Rodon, 24, who was scratched moments before Thursday’s scheduled start with the injury, did not make his season debut until June 28 after recovering from left biceps bursitis.
Sandoval ended his slump with a three-run home run in the fourth inning, hitting a 1-2 pitch from Giolito over the right field fence.
The White Sox erased much of that deficit in the bottom half of the inning, as Garcia smacked the first pitch he saw from Moore for his two-run homer.
NOTES: Giants 3B Pablo Sandoval’s 0-for-39 slump was the longest in club history for a non-pitcher. ... 2B Yoan Moncada committed two of Chicago’s three errors. ... Giants RHP Mark Melancon will undergo season-ending right elbow surgery on Tuesday, Giants manager Bruce Bochy said. Melancon is 1-2 with a 4.50 ERA and 11 saves. ... The White Sox purchased the contracts of RHP Al Alburquerque and RHP Chris Volstad from Triple-A Charlotte before the game. ... A crowd of 16,852 attended the game. Many were clad in green or Irish garb for a “Halfway to St. Patrick’s Day” promotion.