Elias Díaz, Rockies rally off Graveman in 9th, stun White Sox 6-5

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DENVER — Elias Diaz hit a two-run single off Kendall Graveman in the ninth inning, and the Colorado Rockies overcame the loss of starting pitcher Antonio Senzatela to beat the Chicago White Sox 6-5 on.

Senzatela, making his second start since returning from a shoulder injury, led 3-2 in the seventh when Leury Garcia hit a comebacker off the pitcher’s left foot that rolled away for a single. The 27-year-old right-hander threw some warmup pitches before walking off the mound.

Lucas Gilbreath allowed Tim Anderson‘s RBI single and A.J. Pollock‘s two-run single as the White Sox went ahead 5-3.

Jose Iglesias, who drove in a pair of runs, had an RBI single in the bottom half off Jose Ruiz.

Kendall Graveman (3-2) blew a save for the fifth time in 10 chances, walking Brendan Rodgers, Iglesias and Ryan McMahon on 16 pitches, then giving up Diaz’s hit on a first-pitch sinker. Iglesias slid home as right fielder Andrew Vaughn‘s throw skipped to the backstop.

Robert Stephenson (2-1) pitched a perfect ninth as Colorado won for the second time in seven games.

Chicago (49-49) had been trying to move two games over .500 for the first time since April, when the White Sox opened 6-2 and then lost eight in a row. White Sox pitchers walked nine in Chicago’s 16th loss this season after leading.

Charlie Blackmon hit his 39th leadoff homer, his third thiss season, and C.J. Cron drove in his 71st run for the Rockies, who built a 3-0 first-inning lead.

Yasmani Grandal had a two-run single in the fourth for the White Sox, who played their second of 19 straight games against teams with losing records.

Lucas Giolito allowed three runs, six hits and four walks, needing 104 pitches to get through five innings.

TRAINER’S ROOM

White Sox: RHP Joe Kelly left with a right biceps discomfort with two outs in the eighth. … Manager Tony La Russa said RHP Reynaldo Lopez, who hasn’t pitched since Saturday, has a sore lower back. … INF Jake Burger (right hand) started a rehab assignment with Triple-A Charlotte.

Rockies: OF Kris Bryant doubled while being the DH for the second straight day as he deals with plantar fasciitis in his left foot. “It’s a bear, but it affects everybody differently with how you handle the soreness,” manager Bud Black said. … OF Connor Joe (general soreness) was out but could return Thursday, Black said.

BLUNDER

Yoan Moncada walked with two outs in the fifth, loading the bases for Pollock in the fifth. But before Moncada could get to first, Garcia was picked off third base by Diaz, the catcher.

UP NEXT

White Sox: RHP Lance Lynn (1-3, 6.43 ERA) starts Friday night against Oakland RHP James Kaprielian (1-5, 4.74) to kick off a six-game homestand.

Rockies: RHP Jose Urena (1-2, 3.13) starts Thursday night at Coors Field against Los Angeles Dodgers LHP Tyler Anderson (10-1, 2.79) to open a four-game series.

Shohei Ohtani agrees to $30 million deal for 2023 with Angels

Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports
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ANAHEIM, Calif. — Shohei Ohtani agreed to a $30 million deal with the Los Angeles Angels for the 2023 season in the two-way superstar’s final year of arbitration eligibility before free agency.

The Angels announced the deal, avoiding a potentially complicated arbitration case with the 2021 AL MVP.

Ohtani’s deal is fully guaranteed, with no other provisions. The contract is the largest ever given to an arbitration-eligible player, surpassing the $27 million given to Mookie Betts by the Boston Red Sox in January 2020, a month before he was traded to the Los Angeles Dodgers.

Ohtani is having another incredible season at the plate and on the mound for the Angels, regularly accomplishing feats that haven’t occurred in the major leagues since Babe Ruth’s heyday. He is a strong contender for the AL MVP award again alongside the Yankees’ Aaron Judge, who has tied the AL home run record and is closing in on the batting Triple Crown.

Ohtani is batting .276 with 34 homers, 94 RBIs and a .888 OPS as the Halos’ designated hitter. He is 15-8 with a 2.35 ERA and 213 strikeouts as their ace on the mound, and opponents are batting only .207 against him.

The 28-year-old Ohtani still will be a free agent after the 2023 season, and his future could be tied to the immediate fortunes of the Angels, who will complete their seventh consecutive losing season next week. The Angels didn’t trade Ohtani at the deadline despite being out of the playoff race again, and Ohtani is wildly popular among the club’s fans.

Ohtani repeatedly has said winning will be an important factor in choosing his home beyond 2023, and Angels owner Arte Moreno is currently exploring a sale of the team.

Moreno’s leadership has been widely criticized during the Angels’ mostly miserable run of play since 2009, and a fresh start with deep-pocketed new owners could be the best chance to persuade Ohtani to stay with the franchise he joined in 2018 from Japan. Ohtani immediately won the AL Rookie of the Year award, and he rounded into unique form last season after recovering fully from Tommy John surgery.