OAKLAND, Calif. — The White Sox gave up an early lead, then rallied big and survived a wild final play to claim a 7-6 victory Friday against the A’s at Oakland Coliseum.
After falling behind 6-2, the White Sox offense awoke in the seventh inning for five runs, all coming with two outs. Adam LaRoche and Avisail Garcia hit back-to-back, two-run doubles against the Oakland bullpen, and Melky Cabrera started the scoring with an RBI single.
“Offensively, it was good to see them grind it back and put together at-bat after at-bat just to get back into it,” manager Robin Ventura said. “As much as it sputtered for awhile, it’s been good lately.”
Zach Duke earned his first save of the season in place of David Robertson, who had a planned day off. Robertson had appeared in four games during the past week.
Duke walked pinch-hitter Stephen Vogt with two outs in the ninth, then gave up a double to Coco Crisp toward the left-center field gap. Vogt was waved around third by third-base coach Mike Gallego and got caught in a rundown after throws in from Adam Eaton and Alexei Ramirez.
The play was scored an 8-6-3-5-2 putout.
“Hooray. Hallelujah,” Duke said of the wild final play. “It was just awesome, just expertly done. Every throw hit the guy in the chest, and a head’s up play to cut it off, throw it to third and get him in the rundown. You really can’t do it any better than that.”
The late rally kept Sox starter Carlos Rodon from earning his first loss of the season. The rookie was less than sharp in his second start, allowing five earned runs in four-plus innings. He also walked six batters.
Rodon gave up all five runs in the fourth and fifth innings, but he didn’t look to be in a rhythm early in the game, either. An Oakland runner reached scoring position every inning, but Rodon managed to pitch out of each jam until the fourth.
Rodon walked three batters in the fourth inning, and all three baserunners came around to score. He walked two more to lead off the fifth before getting the hook.
“My fastball command was up and down,” Rodon said. “Early on it was there. The first inning felt like I was dotting up that fastball and then I just lost it.”
Carlos Sanchez started at second base in his first game since being called up from Triple-A Charlotte. He went 1 for 4 at the plate and had a mostly quiet night in the field. He dropped a difficult fly ball deep into left field in the sixth inning that was ruled a double for Josh Reddick, who later scored.