Atlanta at Chicago

Atlanta (42-29)120000012690
Chi. White Sox (35-34) «05130000x9161

Danks steers White Sox past Braves, over .500 mark wire reports

CHICAGO -- Sure, the Chicago White Sox had a six-game winning streak -- against Pittsburgh and Washington. How would they do against the NL's best?

As it turned out, just fine.

They roughed up one of baseball's top young pitchers, Tommy Hanson, and rolled to a 9-6 victory Tuesday night against the Atlanta Braves, who came in with a five-game winning streak and a 34-14 mark during the previous seven weeks.

"We're lucky. That's what people want to hear," manager Ozzie Guillen said after his White Sox won for the 11th time in 12 games to go over .500 for the first time since they were 1-0.

"I think people don't believe we can play very well. People forgot those guys [White Sox players] have some credentials. They have numbers in the past. We just didn't play the way we should have been playing early in the season."

On June 8, the White Sox were 24-33 and 9½ games behind Minnesota in the AL Central. Now they are 35-34 and 4½ games back.

Chicago had 13 of its season-high 16 hits during Hanson's 3 2/3 innings. The first 10 were singles before Carlos Quentin's three-run homer put the White Sox up 9-3 in the fourth. It was their first home run in nine games since Alex Rios went deep June 12.

The White Sox are 11-2 against NL teams this season and 139-103 since interleague play began in 1997.

"If we had been getting beat by those teams, we'd have been written off as the worst team in the league," said White Sox starter John Danks, who allowed three runs and six hits in seven innings.

"We have no control of who's on our schedule. We're playing good baseball. We've been saying all along we're a good team. The record looks a lot better, and we feel we're back in the mix."

Danks (7-5) spotted Atlanta a 3-0 lead before retiring 15 of the last 18 batters he faced to post his third consecutive victory.

Hanson (7-4), meanwhile, surrendered a career-high nine runs as his four-game winning streak ended. He had been 4-0 with a 0.75 ERA against AL teams and had a string of 23 consecutive scoreless innings in interleague play before A.J. Pierzynski's two-run single in the second.

Hanson's ERA rose from 3.38 to 4.17 and he didn't record a strikeout for the first time in his two-year career. Not including Tuesday's game and an eight-run blowup May 20 against Cincinnati, Hanson has a 2.56 ERA in 13 starts.

"It was actually pretty embarrassing," Hanson said. "I didn't make my pitches and they let me know. Every fastball I threw over the plate, they crushed. Whatever I threw, they hit. It should be interesting watching the video ... but I definitely don't want to watch right now."

Chicago starters have a 2.16 ERA during the 11-1 surge. Danks seemed ready to break that string, giving up Martin Prado' leadoff homer and Brooks Conrad's two-run double in the second, but he retired the next 11 batters.

"You don't want to be the weak link," Danks said. "We're feeding off each other."

The White Sox sent 10 men to the plate and scored five times in their half of the second on two-run singles by Pierzynski and Omar Vizquel and Rios' RBI infield hit. Hanson threw 36 pitches in the inning.

Alexei Ramirez's third-inning single made it 6-3 before the White Sox broke it open in the fourth. Rios and Paul Konerko singled before Quentin's homer -- with Rios' hit coming after Conrad, playing third base, momentarily lost the ball in his shirt.

"Just ridiculous," Conrad said. "It hit me in the chest and ... went in between the second and third button. Crazy. And sure enough, Quentin hits the home run after that. I felt bad, but really just a freak play. You'll probably never see that again."

Konerko, Ramirez and Pierzynski had three singles apiece for the White Sox. Konerko is batting .429 over his last 19 games and Pierzynski .438 over his last nine.

Brian McCann homered and Conrad had an RBI double in the ninth for the Braves, who had won 42 straight games when scoring five or more runs. Bobby Jenks got the final out for his 15th save.


  • Nationals pitching phenom Stephen Strasburg already is a household name -- except in Ozzie's household. In downplaying his team's recent sweep at Washington, Guillen said: "We only scored one run against the first guy, Starborough, or whatever his name is."
  • The Braves activated RHP Takashi Saito (strained left hamstring) from the 15-day DL and sent RHP Craig Kimbrel to Triple-A Gwinnett.
  • Chicago RHP Jake Peavy has some shoulder pain but says he'll make his scheduled start Friday against the Cubs.
  • Braves RHP Jesse Chavez took over for Hanson and allowed three hits over 4 1/3 scoreless innings.
Copyright 2015 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
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Carlos Quentin (right) blasts a three-run homer to help the White Sox win their seventh in a row.  (AP)
Carlos Quentin (right) blasts a three-run homer to help the White Sox win their seventh in a row. (AP)

Players of the Game

B. Conrad
AB 4
R 0
H 2
HR 0

C. Quentin
AB 4
R 2
H 2
HR 1

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Atlanta Braves
Martin Prado, 2B5221002 .340
Jason Heyward, RF4001000 .259
Chipper Jones, DH4010000 .250
Troy Glaus, 1B4000001 .275
Brian McCann, C4111011 .258
Yunel Escobar, SS4020000 .252
Omar Infante, LF4200012 .306
Melky Cabrera, CF3110101 .261
Brooks Conrad, 3B4023011 .267
2B - Brooks Conrad 2 (7, Danks, Linebrink)
3B - Martin Prado (1, Pena)
HR - Martin Prado (7, Danks), Brian McCann (8, Linebrink)
RBI - Martin Prado (31), Jason Heyward (45), Brian McCann (30), Brooks Conrad 3 (15)
2-OUT RBI - Brooks Conrad 3 (6)
SB - Chipper Jones (5, 2nd base off Danks/Pierzynski)
Team LOB - 4
Outfield Assists - Omar Infante 1
DP - Prado-Escobar-Glaus
Atlanta Braves
Tommy Hanson (L,7-4) 3.21399101 4.17
Jesse Chavez 4.1300030 6.18
HBP - Pierre (by Tommy Hanson)
Pitches-Strikes - Tommy Hanson 84-53, Jesse Chavez 55-40
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Tommy Hanson 4-6, Jesse Chavez 3-6
Batters Faced - Tommy Hanson 25, Jesse Chavez 15
Chicago White Sox
Juan Pierre, LF4110001 .248
Omar Vizquel, 3B5012011 .265
Alex Rios, CF5121001 .318
Paul Konerko, 1B4230002 .304
   a- Dayan Viciedo, PH-1B1000010 .200
Carlos Quentin, RF4223001 .221
Mark Kotsay, DH3010101 .207
A.J. Pierzynski, C4232000 .252
Alexei Ramirez, SS4131002 .262
    Brent Lillibridge, SS0000000 .667
Gordon Beckham, 2B4000014 .202
a-struck out for Konerko in the 8th
2B - Mark Kotsay (4, Hanson)
HR - Carlos Quentin (9, Hanson)
RBI - Omar Vizquel 2 (14), Alex Rios (38), Carlos Quentin 3 (40), A.J. Pierzynski 2 (20), Alexei Ramirez (27)
2-OUT RBI - Omar Vizquel 2 (4), Alex Rios (19), Carlos Quentin 3 (15), Alexei Ramirez (11)
Team LOB - 7
DP - A. Ramirez-Beckham-Konerko
E - Alexei Ramirez (9, Throwing)
Chicago White Sox
John Danks (W,7-5) 7633131 3.23
Tony Pena 1111000 4.46
Scott Linebrink 0.2221001 5.68
Bobby Jenks (S,15) 0.1000000 4.33
Pitches-Strikes - John Danks 99-67, Tony Pena 12-9, Scott Linebrink 20-13, Bobby Jenks 1-1
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - John Danks 4-13, Tony Pena 1-2, Scott Linebrink 2-1, Bobby Jenks 1-0
Batters Faced - John Danks 27, Tony Pena 4, Scott Linebrink 5, Bobby Jenks 1
Game Information
Attendance - 28773
Game Time - 2:38
Temperature - 84
Umpires - Home - Tim McClelland, First Base - Andy Fletcher, Second Base - Mike Everitt, Third Base - Adrian Johnson