Oscar Colás and Lenyn Sosa didn’t start Sunday.
But both had clutch hits during a seven-run eighth inning as the Chicago White Sox rallied to beat the Colorado Rockies 10-5 in front of 40,151 at Coors Field.
The Sox entered the inning trailing 5-3. Yoán Moncada tied it with a two-run double.
Colás, who hit for Trayce Thompson in the seventh, put the Sox ahead with a two-run double. Sosa, who entered in the sixth after Elvis Andrus was ejected for arguing balls and strikes, hit a three-run homer.
“As everybody says, the game doesn’t end until the last out,” Colás said of the comeback through an interpreter.
The late surge helped the Sox avoided a sweep. Here are three takeaways from the three-game series.
1. Colás and Sosa exhibited growth in big spots.
Facing a left-hander in a big spot didn’t faze the left-handed hitting Colás.
Up with the bases loaded against Justin Bruihl, one out and the score tied, Colás sliced a liner just out of the reach of left fielder Nolan Jones for a two-run double.
“Lefty against lefty is always difficult,” Colás said. “But I was just sitting on one pitch, the slider. And he threw me the slider and I was able to hit the ball hard and fortunate enough to come through.”
Sosa came up with two outs and runners on second and third. While meeting with reporters Saturday, he mentioned wanting to be relaxed at the plate as a goal.
Manager Pedro Grifol saw that in his at-bats, not only with the home run to left against Justin Lawrence in the eighth but throughout the weekend after Sosa was recalled from Triple-A Charlotte.
“The one thing we’ve talked about with Sosa is limit your strikeouts and put the ball in play,” Grifol said. “He’s strong. He has good bat speed.
“He hit some to right field in the series that were well struck and the home run shows what kind of pop he has. He hit homers in Triple A and the power is there. All he has to do is play the game right. He has a good baseball IQ so he knows how to do this.”
2. The search for consistency continues Michael Kopech.
Michael Kopech walked Charlie Blackmon to begin the bottom of the first Friday. The next batter, Ezequiel Tovar, homered.
Kopech walked two and surrendered two homers in a five-run first. He’s still searching for consistency after allowing a career-high nine runs in the 14-1 loss.
“All the things I’m trying to work on I’m still struggling with,” Kopech said. “It’s a tough way to get a game started and put us in a position where we were having to fight from behind the whole game.”
Kopech walked four and gave up three home runs.
“I made some bad pitches and got hit hard,” Kopech said. “Not the first time that’s happened this year. Thin air (of Denver), I can’t really put too much on that. It’s more about being able to go out there and executing pitches.”
Kopech is 5-11 with a 5.12 ERA in 23 starts. He has allowed 28 home runs, tied for the second-most in the American League. His 76 walks are the most in the AL.
“Too many free passes,” Grifol said of Friday’s outing. “At times his velocity is good and at times it drops down. It’s hard to pitch with five, six walks a game. No matter who you are. But just got to continue to work.”
3. A rough weekend ended on a good note.
Control issues cost the Sox on Friday and Saturday.
They issued eight walks Friday, five of which later scored.
The Sox walked seven batters in Saturday’s 11-5 loss. Starter Jesse Scholtens walked four during a three-run first inning.
Like Kopech, Scholtens didn’t think there was a Coors Field factor.
“There was some stuff off there in the first inning, any time you walk that many guys and throw that many balls it’s going to be more mechanical,” Scholtens said Saturday. “We’re all competitors here, we’re not afraid of contact by any means.”
As a pitching staff, the Sox have allowed the second-most walks in the majors (498). Only Oakland pitchers have walked more.
It wasn’t the sharpest of series for the Sox.
Friday, Rockies catcher Elias Díaz stole second base when Sox reliever Brent Honeywell went from the windup instead of the stretch.
The Sox made two errors Saturday, including one in the first that resulted in a run.
The Sox got in a hole Sunday, but staged the comeback. They got strong relief work as Bryan Shaw, Aaron Bummer and Gregory Santos didn’t allow a run in the final 4 1/3 innings.
And they got the timely hits in the eighth. It was their third time scoring at least seven runs in an inning this season.
“The momentum wasn’t on our side, it was on theirs,” Grifol said. “It was good to see the guys battle. It’s a good group in there, they look out for each other, root for each other and fight for each other. Sometimes it doesn’t go our way but I like what they’re doing in there.”
Source: Berkshire mont