A.J. Pierzynski didn’t start Sunday, but it didn’t stop him from hitting his 21st homer as the White Sox beat the Angels 4-2.
Pinch-hitting for Tyler Flowers, Pierzynski hit a tie-breaking two-run homer off Jason Isringhausen in the bottom of the seventh. It was his fifth straight game with a homer, matching a White Sox record.
Seven White Sox have homered in five straight games, including Frank Thomas twice. Paul Konerko was the last to do it last season.
Pierzynski’s 21 homers are three more than his career high from 2005, his first season in Chicago. He’s gotten there in just 311 at-bats. Between 2010 and ’11, he had 17 homers in 938 at-bats.
Earlier this offseason the Rays traded away franchise player Evan Longoria. Over the weekend they traded starter Jake Odorizzi to the Twins and designated All-Star outfielder Corey Dickerson for assignment. These were clearly financially driven moves, and now the Rays sport a payroll of less than $70 million. The club’s offseason moves prompted Longoria to say that he feels sorry for Rays fans.
If you asked Rays brass, I’m sure they’d make strong statements defending all of these moves while offering evidence-light arguments that, yes, they truly are interested in fielding a competitive team in 2018. They would likely react VERY angrily to any suggestion that they are tanking this year. Teams never admit that they’re tanking.
In other news, the Rays announced a new blog: