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Pierzynski bails out Jenks, ChiSox with winning homer in 9th

CHICAGO (AP) -- Bobby Jenks blew a save and gave up the lead in a
span of seven pitches. Then A.J. Pierzynski bailed him out and gave
the Chicago White Sox one of their most dramatic wins this season.

Pierzynski hit a two-run homer in the bottom of the ninth inning
after Jenks gave up four straight doubles in the top half, and the
White Sox rallied for a 7-6 win over the Cleveland Indians on
Friday night.

"It's amazing how you can go from four straight doubles, being
down a run, to a hit and a home run and we're winning," said
Pierzynski, who pumped his fist while rounding the bases and then
flipped off his helmet before he was mobbed by teammates at the
plate.

"Everything stays the same and we pick up a game on Detroit.
It's amazing how it goes up and down, back and forth."

The wild victory kept the White Sox a half-game behind Minnesota
in the AL wild-card race and moved third-place Chicago within 4½
games of the AL Central-leading Tigers.

Paul Konerko singled for his fourth hit to start the ninth.
After failing to get a bunt down on the first pitch, Pierzynski
connected to right-center on an 0-2 pitch from reliever Tom Mastny
(0-1).

"I feel good now I didn't get the bunt down," Pierzynski said.
"I was pretty sure it had a chance to go, but with Grady
[Sizemore] out there you never know. He can make some incredible
catches and I saw him turn and jump on the wall and saw he wasn't
going to get it. It was a great feeling."

Pinch-hitter Casey Blake, Andy Marte, Sizemore and Jason
Michaels hit consecutive doubles off Jenks as the Indians quickly
turned a 5-3 deficit into a 6-5 lead in the ninth.

"We got him early, got some guys on and just tried to do what
we did," Sizemore said. "It's a tough way to lose a game. We
fought hard, we came back and they did a good job of getting us in
the ninth."

Alex Cintron's RBI single in the eighth put Chicago ahead 5-3,
and the White Sox turned the game over to Jenks, who had an MRI on
his sore hip Tuesday after blowing a save Monday night in Boston.
The test revealed no structural damage.

Marte made it 5-4 with a drive to right-center and Sizemore tied
the game with a blooper down the left-field line. Michaels hit a
hard grounder down the first-base line for Cleveland's fourth
straight double and Jenks was replaced by Matt Thornton (5-2), who
finally ended the rally.

"I made some good pitches and they got some quick hits," Jenks
said.

Pierzynski said Jenks' pitches lacked their usual velocity.

"The radar gun was saying 96 [mph], but it wasn't the 96 he
usually has," Pierzynski said. "A little less. But it was the
first game back after a few, and with the hip thing going on, it's
tough. He'll be fine and we'll need him down the stretch."

It was Jenks' fourth blown save in 43 chances.

Juan Uribe, in an 0-for-21 skid, homered and had two hits for
the White Sox. His 17th homer leading off the fifth tied the score
at 2. Konerko delivered a two-out single in the inning to put the
White Sox ahead 3-2.

Uribe started another rally in the sixth with a two-out single,
stole second and scored when Scott Podsednik -- in a 3-for-26 slump
-- hit an RBI single for a 4-2 lead to finish Indians starter Paul
Byrd.

The Indians cut the lead to one in the seventh when Victor
Martinez hit a two-out RBI single off Mike MacDougal.

Chicago starter Freddy Garcia gave up six hits, three runs with
four walks and a season-high eight strikeouts in 6 1/3 innings.

In the fifth, Sizemore walked, went to second on Garcia's errant
pickoff attempt and stole third. After Michaels walked, Martinez
hit a hard shot to first that Konerko knocked down from his knees.
He tagged the bag as Sizemore scored for a 2-1 lead.

Byrd gave up nine hits and four runs in 5 2/3 innings. He gave
up consecutive singles to Jermaine Dye, Jim Thome, Konerko and
Pierzynski that tied the score at 1 in the fourth.

Sizemore tripled to start the third and, after a one-out walk to
Martinez, Ryan Garko singled in the game's first run.

Game notes
Sizemore's triple was his 10th of the season, giving him
double figures in doubles, triples, homers and stolen bases for a
second straight year. ... The White Sox donned green hats and
jerseys with green lettering and numbers for a "Halfway to St.
Patrick's Day" promotion. ... Indians DH Travis Hafner missed his
seventh straight game after being hit by a pitch a week ago. ...
White Sox 3B Joe Crede was out a second straight night with a sore
back but is expected back Saturday.