Sierra’s walk-off single propels White Sox
CHICAGO — Hector Noesi made the request and eventually got the result he wanted from Moises Sierra.
That was a win for the Chicago White Sox. Noesi’s search for a victory continues.
Sierra drove in the winning run with a single in the ninth inning, and the White Sox beat the Cleveland Indians 3-2 Wednesday night to complete a three-game sweep.
“I think it was in the sixth inning I told him, `You’ve got to do something for me,” Noesi said. “He did it in the last inning.”
Noesi and Cleveland’s T.J. House each delivered dominant starts. The Indians’ Jason Giambi hit his 440th homer, but the White Sox came away with their seventh win in 10 games.
Cleveland had just scored a run in the top of the ninth off Ronald Belisario (3-3) when the White Sox answered in the bottom half against Bryan Shaw (1-1).
Third baseman Mike Aviles bounced the throw to first on Tyler Flowers’ leadoff grounder. Pinch-runner Leury Garcia stole second and moved up on a fly by Marcus Semien before Sierra lined a 3-2 pitch to right for the winning single, teammates mobbing him around first base.
“I’ve done that in the minor leagues before,” Sierra said. “But never in the major leagues and I’m very happy and very thankful for that.”
It all happened after a botched throw on a routine play.
“Routine ground ball, play that’s gotta be made, and I didn’t make it,” Aviles said.
The White Sox took a 2-1 lead in the eighth when Adam Dunn drove in Gordon Beckham with a bases-loaded sacrifice fly against Cody Allen, but Belisario couldn’t hold it in the ninth.
Michael Brantley drove a leadoff single off the pitcher’s right hip, and the problems just mounted from there.
The Indians caught a break when Adam Dunn overthrew second after fielding Jason Kipnis’ grounder to first. With two out, Belisario intentionally walked Giambi before Brantley scored on Yan Gomes’ single, barely sliding in ahead of a strike from Sierra in right to tie it at 2-all.
The blown save was the third in six chances for Belisario.
The Indians took a 1-0 lead on Giambi’s solo homer off Noesi in the second. But Chicago tied it in the seventh when Dunn singled leading off against House and scored on a two-out base hit by Semien against Scott Atchison.
Noesi, meanwhile, dominated over 7 1/3 innings but still is seeking his first win in more than two years.
“He’s really transitioned well from going as the long guy in the bullpen to being a starter,” manager Robin Ventura said. “I think he’s gotten a better feel for some different pitches just because now he’s going through the lineup a couple times and he’s able to get a feel for it instead of being in there for an inning or an inning and a half.”
He gave up one run and five hits while striking out five without a walk. But the winless streak continued.
The right-hander is 0-4 in six starts and 12 appearances this season with Seattle, Texas and Chicago and 0-14 in his last 40 games. His most recent win? That was when he beat Minnesota while with Seattle on May 6, 2012.
House gave up one run and five hits in 6 1/3 innings and struck out eight while walking one. He left with a 1-0 lead after giving up back-to-back singles to Dunn and Alexei Ramirez, who was thrown out trying to stretch it to a double.
“On a night that we’re going home pretty frustrated that was about an encouraging a start as you’ll see,” manager Terry Francona said. “He was really good.”
*Photo courtesy of Brian Kersey/Getty Images