Kicking Them While They're Down

After handing the Yankees a 13-2 thrashing in the first game of the season between these two teams, the Chicago White Sox still had plenty left in the tank for game two. The Sox used a seven-run fourth inning to put David Wells and the Yanks away for good as they cruised all the way to an 11-2 victory.

The Yankees actually looked to be getting the memory of game one behind them, taking an early 2-0 lead against Bartolo Colon. Nick Johnson hit a solo home run to right-centerfield in the second inning, and Derek Jeter hit an RBI single in the third.

But David Wells' back started barking, and the White Sox started making a whole lot of good contact.

Wells (12-5) hasn't looked the same since his back injury flared up again. He received an epidural to numb the pain, but he is still not the pitcher he was in the beginning of the season. He demonstrated that by coming completely undone in the fourth inning.

Frank Thomas led off the inning with a solo home run, his sixth in as many games, before Magglio Ordonez flied out to record an out. Wells then walked Carlos Lee on a full count and allowed three consecutive doubles to put Chicago up 3-2. One out later, Tony Graffanino connected on a two-RBI triple that was followed by Roberto Alomar's second home run as a member of the White Sox.

When the dust settled Chicago had a 7-2 lead and that would be plenty for Colon (12-11). The off-season acquisition, which the Yankees helped facilitate, scattered nine hits and a walk over seven innings, allowing just two runs while fanning 10 batters. Kelly Wunsch and Damaso Marte pitched the final two innings with perfect relief to end the game.

Wells was charged with ten runs on 11 hits and four walks in just 5 1/3 innings. He struck out four batters.

The ChiSox added three more runs in the sixth on a Roberto Alomar double that knocked Wells out of the game and a Frank Thomas single. Paul Konerko's third homer in two games capped the scoring at 11-2 in the ninth.

The Yankees have now been outscored 24-4 in the series so far. They have also been out-hit 26-14. The final game of the three-game series is on Thursday at 1:05 pm. Mike Mussina will get the start for the Yankees, looking to avoid a sweep at home. Neal Cotts (1-0, 4.85) will take the mound for the White Sox in just his fourth major-league start.

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