Marlins 5, White Sox 4
CHICAGO (AP)—Ozzie Guillen was more reserved this time, his anger at his team’s most recent loss toned down from the previous night. He asked how long it had been since the White Sox had won a series. The answer—a month—made him chuckle sarcastically.
“And we’re still getting paid for that, huh? That’s a little embarrassing. Getting paid to lose series,” Guillen said Wednesday after his bullpen failed again and the Florida Marlins left Chicago with a 5-4 victory, thanks to a three-run homer by pinch-hitter Jason Wood off closer Bobby Jenks.
The White Sox lost for the 19th time in 24 games, a staggering figure for a team that won the World Series two years ago.
“I don’t know what to say,” said Paul Konerko, who homered in the ninth. “It’s miserable. It’s no fun. You couldn’t have scripted it any worse. … It’s tough, man.”
Chicago starter Jon Garland had given up just two hits when he entered the eighth with the White Sox leading 2-1. But Aaron Boone opened the inning with a single and shortstop Juan Uribe made his second error, missing Garland’s throw at second on Brett Carroll’s bunt.
“I take full responsibility for it,” said Garland, whose throw tailed away from Uribe but was very catchable. “I’m better than that.”
That’s what the White Sox have been saying all season—that they’re better than how they’ve played. But they’re now 10 games under .500 for the first time since the 2001 season.
Jenks, the most reliable of all the team’s relievers, entered and Wood hit his third pitch over the fence in left. On Tuesday night, Matt Thornton gave up a go-ahead homer to Dan Uggla in the ninth as Florida won 7-5.
That loss, when Chicago also failed to put down a key bunt, had Guillen steaming. He called the team’s performance a joke and said the White Sox were wasting their talent. He questioned whether his players believed in themselves and said they deserved a fair share of the blame for the stretch of woeful baseball.
“Sometimes you think about what is going to be next,” Guillen said Wednesday. “A lot of little things happen. Wow, what’s going on here?”
Wood was back in the clubhouse getting another pair of batting gloves before he was called upon, thinking that Joe Borchard was going to be the pinch-hitter. Then he got the word.
“It was a funny situation,” Wood said. “Joe had been called upon. … It was kind of good that it worked out that way. You don’t have too much time to think about too many things. … I got back down there and he (Jenks) was just finishing his warmup pitches when I walked out there.”
Florida manager Fredi Gonzalez was going to use Borchard to bunt if runners were at first and second. But with runners at the corners, he switched to Wood.
“It was lucky,” Gonzalez said. “There’s nothing strategical behind it.”
Taylor Tankersley (4-1) got two outs in the seventh for the win. Gregg relieved with runners at second and third in the eighth and one out. He got Rob Mackowiak on a grounder but then issued back-to-back walks to Josh Fields and Luis Terrero to force in a run and make it 4-3.
Carroll raced in to make a sliding catch of Uribe’s liner to center to end the inning.
Garland (4-5), an 18-game winner in each of the last two seasons, yielded three hits and three runs, two earned, in seven-plus innings. He gave up a two-out RBI double to Boone in the second and then retired 13 straight in a pitchers’ duel with Sergio Mitre.
“It doesn’t matter how you lose. Every one is frustrating to me,” Garland said. “I hate explaining it even more.”
Florida got a two-out run in the second when Hermida walked and scored on Boone’s double.
The White Sox reached Mitre in the fourth with a two-out rally. Jermaine Dye doubled before Mackowiak hit an RBI single to tie it and scored on Fields’ double.
Mitre allowed two runs and eight hits in 6 1-3 innings.
White Sox backup catcher Toby Hall spent 90 minutes at a hospital Tuesday night while he received five bags of fluid intravenously. Hall was taken out after playing only four innings during the 7-5 loss to Florida earlier that day because of flulike symptoms. He also was hit in the head by a backswing at the plate. … White Sox DH Jim Thome missed his second straight game with back spasms. Thome said his back was improving and hoped to be ready to play in Friday’ series opener against the Cubs. … Marlins LHP Dontrelle Willis, who had to leave his start Tuesday night after one inning with a tight left forearm, played catch in the outfield Wednesday. He hopes to make his next start Sunday, but it could be pushed to next week.