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May 8, 2024 9:44 pm

Paul DeJong, White Sox pull out finale at Tampa Bay

rays, white sox

Paul DeJong hit his second home run in as many games as the Chicago White Sox salvaged a game in their three-game series, beating the Tampa Bay Rays 4-1 on Wednesday in St. Petersburg, Fla.

In a 2-for-4 outing, the shortstop socked a two-run homer in the fifth off Rays starter Aaron Civale (2-3), and the White Sox tacked on two more in the sixth to snap their two-game losing skid.

Chicago’s Bryan Ramos (double) and Tommy Pham had two hits and an RBI apiece. Andrew Vaughn and Andrew Benintendi each had two hits with a double.

Chris Flexen (2-3) allowed one run on three hits in six innings to beat the Rays for the second time in two weeks. He fanned eight and walked one.

White Sox closer Michael Kopech allowed a single in the ninth but got a double play to end it for his third save in four chances.

The Rays got two hits from Harold Ramirez and an RBI double by Isaac Paredes, but the club produced just four hits as its season-high, five-game winning streak ended.

Civale yielded two runs on five hits and two walks with four strikeouts in 4 2/3 innings.

Right-handed starters Civale and Flexen, both possessing different approaches, were nearly unhittable through the first three innings.

After beating the Rays two starts ago at home, Flexen relied on a steady diet of fastballs to put away the first nine hitters for the home side.

Tampa Bay struck for a lone run in the fourth. Yandy Diaz opened the frame with a single and came around to score when Paredes stung a line-drive double to left that eluded a leaping Benintendi.

Meanwhile, the wicked bite of Civale’s breaking pitches kept the White Sox off-balance until the fifth.

Ramos led off with a double. DeJong then scorched his fifth homer on a drive to left, a 400-foot blast to make it 2-1 and give the visitors their first lead in the series.

In the sixth against reliever Kevin Kelly, Benintendi doubled and Ramos delivered an RBI single to right for a 3-1 advantage. After a fielder’s choice at home and a strikeout, Pham lined an RBI single to center to move the lead to three runs.

The Rays threatened with runners on first and second in the seventh with one out, but a fly ball by pinch hitter Josh Lowe resulted in a double play after Paredes went to third on the play.

–Field Level Media

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