The Chicago White Sox avoided a sweep in Sunday’s series finale against the Baltimore Orioles. Dylan Cease dazzled the Orioles and the Sox executed thanks to some timely hits. Despite some ninth-inning dramatics, the South Siders hung on for a 4-3 victory.
The Mustached Assassin
Dylan Cease has blossomed into Chicago’s ace in 2022. The righty set a career-high with 13 strikeouts, baffling Baltimore hitters with his slider along the way.
The only run he surrendered in his seven innings of work was a solo homer to Jorge Mateo. The Orioles put just six balls in play, including Mateo’s solo home run, through the first five innings. Simply put, Cease made it look easy in his 15th start of the year. He lowered his ERA to 2.56 after allowing just the one run on four hits and one walk.
Here are the locations and pitch types for his 13 punchouts.
Baltimore starter Jordan Lyles worked seven innings as well but allowed four runs on six hits and one walk while striking out four.
Gavin Sheets put the White Sox on the board with a two-run homer against Lyles in the second inning. Andrew Vaughn’s sacrifice fly in the third made it 3-1. Seby Zavala brought home what would be the final Sox tally with an RBI single in the fourth. Jose Abreu singled twice and scored two runs in the sequence.
Protecting a 4-1 lead, Joe Kelly pitched around back-to-back singles by Cedric Mullins and Trey Mancini in the eighth.
It’s Never Easy
However, things got tense in the ninth inning. Abreu committed errors on back-to-back plays to help the Orioles load the bases with no outs against interim closer Kendall Graveman. Jonathan Arauz plated a run with an RBI single to right-center and the Baltimore rally looked to be on. Pinch-hitter Rougned Odor struck out but Cedric Mullins made it a 4-3 game with a sacrifice fly to deep center.
But Graveman bounced back and struck out Trey Mancini for his third save as the White Sox snapped a four-game skid.
The Sox avoided their first four-game sweep at home since Sept. 4-7, 2017 against Cleveland.
The Orioles’ season-high four-game winning streak came to an end.
Lenyn Sosa picked up his first MLB hit when he doubled and scored in the third inning.
Yoan Moncada is expected to be in the lineup Tuesday when he’s eligible to return from the 10-day IL, Sox manager Tony La Russa said.
What On Tap Next?
Lucas Giolito looks to right himself after posting a 9.47 ERA in his past five starts as the Chicago White Sox visit the Los Angeles Angels to begin the week. Righty Noah Syndergaard (4-6, 3.86 ERA) will take the mound for the Angels in the series opener. NBC Sports Chicago will carry the action with first pitch at 8:38 PM CT and Sox On Tap: After Dark is your postgame headquarters.
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