Crede, Lee Lift Sox to 8-5 Extra-Inning Win

(SN Report #504) - Whether the eight-run output by the White Sox offense was a sign of things to come or simply a swing-for-the-fence strategy having its moment, the Sox avoided a sweep of the Tigers on Sunday, winning 8-5 in 12 innings.

The win came at the hands of a walk-off three-run home run by Joe Crede. It was Crede's only hit of the game and fourth homer of the season. The game went to extra-innings after the Sox' bullpen lost the 5-3 lead in the eighth, tying the game 5-5.

Tom Gordon was on the mound when the Tigers tied the game, but it was Kelly Wunsch who loaded the bases on a double, hit by pitch and walk; all without retiring a single batter.

After Gordon struck out Craig Monroe for the first out, Eric Munson hit a RBI-sacrifice fly and pinch-hitter Andres Torres hit what seemed to be a routine soft lineout, but it instead went over the head of a back-peddling Jose Valentin at shortstop, scoring the tying run. Omar Infante struck out to end the inning.

Danny Wright started for the Sox and was in line for the win heading into the eighth. Wright allowed three runs on six hits and one walk in seven innings. Two of the runs came via back-to-back homers in the fourth. Wright struck out seven and threw 106 pitches, his highest pitch total this season.

Damaso Marte and Gary Glover each threw a scoreless inning of relief with Billy Koch throwing two scoreless innings in between. After a slow start to this season, Koch has not given up a run in his last seven innings, lowering his ERA from 8.56 to 5.75. Glover picked up the win.

The Sox scored their first runs of the game in the fifth with a grand slam by Carlos Lee, giving the Sox the 4-3 lead. The Sox loaded the bases with a Crede hit by pitch, Joe Borchard single and D'Angelo Jimenez walk. The homer gives Lee nine on the season and a team-leading 32 RBIs.

Borchard, who went 2-4 in the game, drove in his first run of the season with a sacrifice fly in the sixth, scoring Valentin. The Sox scored the run without the benefit of a hit as Valentin walked, stole second and advanced to third on a groundout before scoring from third.

The Sox put the winning run in scoring position in the ninth, 10th and 11th innings, but failed to bring him in each time. In the 12th, Tony Graffanino reached on a throwing error by Munson at third and Paul Konerko was intentionally walked, bringing up Crede who put the game away with a homer to left.

Steve Sparks took the loss for the Tigers. Starter Adam Bernero went six innings, giving up five runs.

The Sox will now head to Toronto to play the Blue Jays in a four-game set starting Monday at 6:05 p.m. CT. Mark Buehrle is scheduled to start against lefty Mark Hendrickson. The game will be televised on Fox Sports Net Chicago.

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