CHICAGO (AP) — Gavin Sheets hit a tying, two-run homer in the seventh inning and scored the winning run on a wild pitch in the ninth to lift the Chicago White Sox over the Oakland Athletics 3-2 Saturday night.
Sheets lined a leadoff double against Zach Jackson (2-3) in the ninth and advanced to third on Josh Harrison’s sacrifice bunt before Jackson bounced a slider with Tim Anderson at the plate.
Liam Hendricks (2-3) worked around Elvis Andrus’ double in the top of the ninth for the win.
Sheets homered in the seventh off reliever Austin Pruitt to help the White Sox (50-50) stop a two-game mini-skid.
Seth Brown hit a long solo shot for his third homer in two days and Paul Blackburn returned to All-Star form with five shutout innings, but Oakland’s season-high four-game winning streak ended.
Sean Murphy also went deep for the A’s.
Anderson batted leadoff and singled twice as the All-Star shortstop appeals a three-game suspension from Major League Baseball for making contact with plate umpire Nick Mahrley during an argument Friday.
The discipline was announced just before Saturday’s first pitch. Anderson will remain active until his appeal is heard.
Chicago starter Johnny Cueto allowed two runs on six hits in seven innings. The veteran righty walked only one.
Blackburn exited with a 2-0 lead after allowing five hits, walking none and striking out four. A first-time All-Star this season, Blackburn had lost three straight with a 13.19 ERA during the slide.
The right-hander had allowed 21 runs and 20 hits in his previous 14 1/3 innings and was pounded for 10 runs by Texas last Sunday.
Blackburn was 6-3 with 2.90 ERA before his abrupt slump. He started the season 5-0 and had a 1.70 ERA on May 25.
Murphy hit his 12th homer to left field off Cueto in the first to put Oakland ahead 1-0. Brown launched a 452-foot drive to right in the third, his 15th.
Brown hit two solo homers Friday in his first game after the birth of his first child, son Cannon.
Pruitt, the second A’s reliever, hit Andrew Vaughn with a pitch to start the seventh. Sheets followed with his homer to right.
Anderson and manager Tony La Russa were ejected Friday from a 7-3 loss in the series opener after a heated exchange over a called strike from A’s reliever Domingo Acevedo that appeared to be high. The tip of Anderson’s helmet appeared to make contact with Mahrley, but La Russa said Friday he didn’t notice any contact.
Before Saturday’s game, La Russa said he watched video from the incident and said, “I think there’s an argument to be made in Tim’s favor, so we’ll see.
“Did you see how the interaction happened?” La Russa added. “The way we see it, there’s an argument to be made that the umpire didn’t move back, he was moving forward as well.”
It’s the third time Anderson has been disciplined by MLB in the past year, including a one-game suspension overturned on appeal earlier this season.
Minnie Minoso, inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame last Sunday, was honored by the White Sox in a pregame ceremony.
A native of Cuba who grew up on a sugar plantation, Minoso was a nine-time All-Star and finished his career with 2,110 hits and a .299 batting average. He died in 2015.
He starred with the New York Cubans in the Negro Leagues before becoming the first Black Latino player in the major leagues in 1949, two years after Jackie Robinson broke in.
Athletics: Manager Mark Kotsay said INF Jed Lowrie (left shoulder) was set to play seven to nine innings in the field Saturday in his rehab assignment with Triple-A Las Vegas. Lowrie, out since June 27, will likely be the DH at Las Vegas on Sunday.
White Sox: OF Luis Robert was scratched from a rehab game with Triple-A Charlotte due to cold symptoms, but La Russa said Robert would be flying back to Chicago. The White Sox originally placed Robert on the IL retroactive to July 19 with lightheadedness and blurred vision. … La Russa said RHP Reynaldo Lopez (lower back strain) is making progress, but there’s no timetable for his return.
Oakland RHP Adam Oller (1-3, 8.07 ERA) faces Chicago RHP Dylan Cease (10-4, 2.03) on Sunday. Cease hasn’t allowed a run in his last 20 2/3 innings while winning three straight starts.
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