Griffey ties Sosa on home run list
“It’s weird,” Griffey said. “I’ve watched Sammy throughout the years. Tying him, it’s OK, I guess.”
Griffey’s two-run drive in the second inning was his first since Chicago acquired him from Cincinnati on July 31, and No. 609 for his career. The 13-time All-Star was just 9-for-43 with four RBIs and no extra-base hits for the White Sox entering the game.
“It’s about time,” Guillen said.
Alexei Ramirez and A.J. Pierzynski each hit a three-run homer for Chicago, which has won eight of nine and maintained a one-game lead over Minnesota in the AL Central. Nick Swisher homered for the third straight game and Griffey scored three times.
Griffey hit an RBI single and Ramirez connected for his 14th homer in Chicago’s six-run first against knuckleballer R.A. Dickey (3-8), who lasted just two innings. Griffey made it 8-0 with a drive to right after going 46 at-bats without a homer.
“I don’t really worry about that,” he said. “Everybody else does. I’m more concerned about getting hits and getting on base. You get hits and home runs happen. But it is good to get the first one at home.”
The White Sox have scored 13 or more runs in three of their last four games and the 15 runs were one short of their season high. It was an impressive showing playing without Jim Thome, who was scratched with what he called a “little bit of a lower abdominal thing.” The slugger expects to be ready for the next game on Friday.
The 15 runs also were the most allowed by the lowly Mariners since Kansas City scored 17 on July 3, 2007. Seattle has lost six straight and 11 of 13 overall.
“It seemed like no matter what we threw up there they were covering it with their barrels somehow,” said Dickey, who tied a major league record with four wild pitches in an inning Sunday against Minnesota. “It’s a tough stretch for me personally. The last two weeks I’ve been kind of out of rhythm.”
The White Sox have hit four or more homers in six games this month and 10 times this season. They have 14 in their last four games and lead the majors with 188.
“It feels like a dream right now,” said Ramirez, who has homered in three of four games and is a leading candidate for AL Rookie of the Year. “I don’t want to wake up from it.”
Gavin Floyd (13-6) was the beneficiary of all that run support. The right-hander allowed three runs and six hits in six innings.
“They’ve got a good ballclub, they’re really rolling and I wish we could have given them some better competition this week,” Mariners manager Jim Riggleman said.
Thome was available to pinch hit. With Thome out, Griffey moved from right field to designated hitter. Swisher went from center to right, and DeWayne Wise started in center. … Wise was replaced by Brian Anderson in the top of the fifth after straining a muscle near his groin. … Mariners RHP Carlos Silva (right elbow tendinitis) is feeling better and could start on Aug. 31, Riggleman said. … Seattle RHP Brandon Morrow, who is being converted to a starter, is scheduled to throw about 70 pitches for Triple-A Tacoma on Thursday. Riggleman said Morrow likely will make one or two more starts and be called up when rosters expand on September 1. … LHP Erik Bedard’s most recent bullpen session didn’t go as well as hoped and his next throwing session, scheduled for Saturday, likely will be pushed back. Riggleman hopes to have Bedard back before the end of the season but called a potential return “gravy if he does.” … Riggleman said RHP Felix Hernandez, whose previously injured left ankle was hit by a hard groundball on Tuesday, was fine.