Walk-off blast from Adam Dunn caps night of comebacks

If someone had to show one clip of the Sox 6-5 win over the Yankees, they would undoubtedly go with Adam Dunn pulverizing an 0-2 fastball from David Robertson for a two-run walk-off home run. They'd show slow-mos of Dunn's swing, they'd flash to how Robertson threw both his arms up in frustration immediately after contact, and they would call it a night, and it would be fine. In terms of video, drama, and just win probability, this is the moment to highlight.

The Sox are a scoring machine that is seemingly never discouraged, and issued another reminder that offense-minded and mediocre is better to watch than pitching-oriented and terrible.

Down a run in the ninth facing one of the best relievers in the American League, the Sox faced long odds, but I would probably have put more money on the heart of the order doing something than Hector Noesi redeeming himself from an early 3-0 deficit, or Hiroki Kurda departing the game before him

In his fifth start in a White Sox uniform, Noesi put his most sympathetic handlers so far in an early 3-0 hole by tossing a bomb to struggling Yankees backstop Brian McCann. The walk to Mark Teixiera to set up the three-run blast was one of five Noesi issued on the evening. Yet despite extra baserunners, and his method of slowing the game down to its four-hour pace, a comebacker double play from Ichiro Suzuki sealed a six-inning quality start for him.

It was a discouragingly poor performance from Noesi in terms of stuff and delivery, as he really did not consistently execute any of his breaking pitches, but on a personal note for him, it could probably be considered an exercise in perseverance. Robin Ventura showed mid-rotation confidence levels in Noesi (or black plague levels of disgust with his bullpen) as his last pitch to Suzuki was his 111th of the night. Only 63 of which were strikes.

Thanks to the other comeback of the night, Noesi was in line for the win for a hot second. Alexei Ramirez's two-run U.S. Cellular Field shot to left field — already his seventh of the season — put the Sox up 4-3 in the fifth after a long night of wildness and inefficiency from Kuroda that was not heavily capitalized upon. The other two tallies were Adam Eaton old-school specials, or the types of runs that Juan Pierre was supposed to rack up.

After singling in the first, Eaton stole second and hustled all the way home after Kelly Johnson couldn't scoop a low throw from Yangervis Solarte. He picked away at the deficit again when a high chopper he hit to second forced Brian Roberts to rush another low throw that Johnson couldn't handle, scoring Alejandro De Aza — who otherwise endured another horrific 0-for-4 night — from second base.

Once freed from the brutal reign of Noesi, the Yankees rallied on the similarly shaggy Scott Downs and Jake Petricka in the seventh. Downs, who couldn't retire Roberts and was then left in to face Alfonso Soriano and allowed singles to both, gave way to Petricka, who renewed his control problems from two days ago. After a Brett Gardner sacrifice, he walked Derek Jeter, pushed a run home on a wild pitch, allowed a go-ahead sac fly before walking Teixiera to load the bases.

After getting out of that nightmare seventh without further problems, Petricka actually started the eighth and put two more runners on before giving way to Daniel Webb. Despite lacking a major role in the narrative of this game, Webb is the winning pitcher of record.



Box Score

Team Record: 25-25

Next Game: Tomorrow at 1:10 p.m. CT vs. New York on WCIU


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