|Chi. White Sox||1||0||4||0||0||0||3||0||0||8||5||0|
Belliard fouled off five consecutive pitches on a 1-2 count, then hit a three-run homer as the Indians overcame three deficits for a 12-8 victory over Chicago on Thursday night, their third consecutive win over the White Sox.
"It just feels good," Belliard said. "I wasn't trying to hit the ball out of the park. He threw a changeup and I hit it. The big thing is coming back to win this series over a very good team."
But the defending World Series champions couldn't prevent the Indians from winning the final three games of the series after losing the opener 11-0. The White Sox lost for the fifth time in seven games and dropped 2½ games behind AL Central leader Detroit.
"Just looking at the way we played, we're lucky to be where we are," White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen said. "We didn't pitch well in this series. They swung the bats well, but as a team, we're not throwing the ball the way we should. That's why we lost the last three games."
Ben Broussard had four of Cleveland's 14 hits as the Indians improved to 6-3 against the White Sox this season after losing 15 of 19 to them last year.
"This was an outstanding effort by everybody," Cleveland manager Eric Wedge said. "So many people stepped up and I can't say enough about the effort.
"Ronnie is one of the best in clutch situations and he kept battling."
Belliard finally connected off Brandon McCarthy (2-3) for his third homer to put Cleveland ahead 10-8 in the seventh inning. Aaron Boone followed with a triple off the wall in center and scored on a single by Grady Sizemore.
Broussard capped the scoring in the eighth with his seventh homer.
Fernando Cabrera (1-1) pitched 1 1/3 innings for the win, despite yielding a three-run homer to Dye in the top of the seventh.
"There's no doubt that was a big lift to go ahead right there, but the game wasn't over," Dye said. "We had to not let them get the momentum back, but they did it. That's a good team over in that clubhouse."
Chicago starter Jose Contreras allowed six runs in five-plus innings, but the White Sox rallied after he left to keep his 13-game winning streak alive. The right-hander appeared to be headed to his first loss in 17 starts since Aug. 15 after Jason Michaels' two-run homer helped Cleveland take a 7-5 lead in the sixth.
"What a crazy game," Michaels said. "I just want to sit at my locker and not move. Just relax.
"There were so many emotional swings, but when Ronnie kept fouling off those pitches, I think everybody on our bench just knew -- just felt -- he was going to come through.
"But to end that at-bat with a home run, that's just incredible."
Indians left-hander Scott Sauerbeck made his first appearance since being arrested early Tuesday morning when he and a female companion allegedly attempted to hide from police while trying to avoid a traffic violation.
Sauerbeck struck out one and walked two in the seventh. He was relieved by Cabrera and Dye then homered over the wall in left for an 8-7 lead.
Thome put Chicago ahead with a first-inning sacrifice fly. Cleveland received RBI singles from Victor Martinez and Broussard in the bottom half, but Chicago regained the lead with a four-run third off Indians starter Paul Byrd.
Thome hit a two-run double and scored when Dye hit the next pitch over the wall in right for his 15th homer and a 5-2 lead.
|Ben Broussard, who has four hits, thanks Ronnie Belliard for driving him home on a three-run shot. (AP)|
|Players of the Game|
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|Chicago White Sox|
|Scott Podsednik, LF||2||2||0||0||3||2||0|
|Tadahito Iguchi, 2B||3||2||1||0||2||1||1|
|Jim Thome, DH||3||2||1||3||1||1||1|
|Jermaine Dye, RF||5||2||2||5||0||0||2|
|A.J. Pierzynski, C||3||0||0||0||1||0||1|
|Joe Crede, 3B||4||0||0||0||0||1||1|
|Rob Mackowiak, CF||3||0||1||0||1||0||0|
|Alex Cintron, SS||4||0||0||0||0||0||1|
|Ross Gload, 1B||4||0||0||0||0||0||1|
|2B - Tadahito Iguchi (, Byrd), Jim Thome (, Byrd)|
|HR - Jermaine Dye 2 (, Byrd, Cabrera)|
|SF - Jim Thome ()|
|RBI - Jim Thome 3 (), Jermaine Dye 5 ()|
|2-OUT RBI - Jermaine Dye 3 ()|
|SB - Scott Podsednik 2 (, 2nd base off Byrd/Martinez, 2nd base off Wickman/Martinez)|
|CS - Joe Crede (, 2nd base by Byrd/Martinez)|
|Team LOB - 5|
|DP - Cintron-Gload|
|Chicago White Sox|
|Matt Thornton (BS,; L,-)||1||2||3||3||1||2||1|
|Brandon McCarthy (BS,)||1||3||2||2||0||1||1|
|WP - Jose Contreras 2 (), Brandon McCarthy ()|
|Pitches-Strikes - Jose Contreras 107-68, Matt Thornton 25-12, Brandon McCarthy 23-17, Neal Cotts 12-8, Jeff Nelson 9-5|
|Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Jose Contreras 6-5|
|Batters Faced - Jose Contreras 27, Matt Thornton 6, Brandon McCarthy 6, Neal Cotts 3, Jeff Nelson 2|
|Grady Sizemore, CF||3||1||2||2||1||0||0|
|Jason Michaels, LF||5||1||1||2||0||1||3|
|Jhonny Peralta, SS||5||0||0||0||0||3||2|
|Travis Hafner, DH||2||2||0||0||3||2||0|
|Victor Martinez, C||4||1||1||1||1||0||2|
|Ben Broussard, 1B||5||2||4||2||0||0||1|
|Casey Blake, RF||4||1||2||1||1||1||4|
|Ronnie Belliard, 2B||5||2||3||4||0||0||3|
|Aaron Boone, 3B||4||2||1||0||0||1||1|
|2B - Casey Blake 2 (, Contreras, Contreras)|
|3B - Aaron Boone (, McCarthy)|
|HR - Jason Michaels (, Thornton), Ben Broussard (, Cotts), Ronnie Belliard (, McCarthy)|
|SF - Grady Sizemore ()|
|RBI - Grady Sizemore 2 (), Jason Michaels 2 (), Victor Martinez (), Ben Broussard 2 (), Casey Blake (), Ronnie Belliard 4 ()|
|2-OUT RBI - Victor Martinez (), Ben Broussard 2 (), Casey Blake ()|
|SB - Grady Sizemore (, 2nd base off Contreras/Pierzynski)|
|Team LOB - 8|
|E - Jhonny Peralta (, Misplayed grounder)|
|Scott Sauerbeck (H,)||0.2||0||2||2||2||1||0|
|Fernando Cabrera (BS,; W,-)||1.1||1||1||1||1||1||1|
|Pitches-Strikes - Paul Byrd 97-59, Scott Sauerbeck 21-10, Fernando Cabrera 20-11, Bob Wickman 21-10|
|Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Paul Byrd 8-8, Scott Sauerbeck 1-0, Fernando Cabrera 1-2, Bob Wickman 2-0|
|Batters Faced - Paul Byrd 26, Scott Sauerbeck 4, Fernando Cabrera 6, Bob Wickman 4|
|Attendance - 20846|
|Game Time - 3:06|
|Temperature - 69|
|Umpires - Home - Joe West, First Base - Ed Rapuano, Second Base - Tony Randazzo, Third Base - Jim Wolf|