CHICAGO (AP) -- Jermaine Dye doesn't seek the spotlight. It's
getting tough to ignore him, though.
The soft-spoken outfielder made another big statement on Friday
night when he hit a solo homer and then put the White Sox ahead
with a two-run single off Rafael Betancourt in the eighth inning to
lead Chicago to a 5-4 victory over the Cleveland Indians.
"I'm just a laid-back guy who comes out, has fun and plays the
game," Dye said. "I'm not looking to be in the papers and all
that. I'm just having fun, enjoying the game I love to play."
And he's playing as well as ever.
He's batting .316 with 19 homers and 46 RBI -- numbers that
rival those he delivered for Kansas City in 2000, when he drove in
118 and set career-highs in average (.321) and home runs (33).
After taking two of three from AL Central leader Detroit, the
White Sox appeared headed toward a loss until Dye lined a 1-2 pitch
to center to drive in Jim Thome and Paul Konerko with the tying and
The hit made a winner of Matt Thornton (1-1), who pitched
two-thirds of an inning. Bobby Jenks walked Jhonny Peralta and
allowed a single by Ronnie Belliard that put runners on first and
second in the ninth before retiring Aaron Boone on a grounder for
his 18th save in 19 opportunities.
Cleveland's Cliff Lee allowed four runs and six hits in a
season-high 7 2/3 innings. He retired 15 of 16 batters before Dye
went deep with two outs in the sixth -- a solo shot that made it
Lee left after walking Thome on a close 3-2 pitch with two outs
in the eighth. Konerko, who had three hits, then doubled to left
off Betancourt (0-2) to put runners on second and third. Dye, who
was 0-for-6 against the right-hander, then delivered the winning
"It just looked like a pitch that came back over the middle,"
Cleveland manager Eric Wedge said.
Often overshadowed by Thome, Konerko and A.J. Pierzynski, Dye is
calling attention to himself, whether he means to or not. He is not
outspoken, not a vocal leader, although he'll offer teammates
advice when asked.
He's just producing.
The World Series MVP last year, Dye has reached base in 17
straight games and is batting .350 (21-for-60) in that stretch. He
has seven homers and 12 RBI in his last 11 games.
Cotts relieved starter Javier Vazquez with two outs and runners
on first and second, and Hafner promptly knocked a 3-2 pitch to the
seats in right-center to put the Indians ahead 4-2.
Vazquez struck out a season-high nine, but hit three batters,
allowed seven hits and threw 110 pitches in 5 2-3 innings. In his
last two starts, Vazquez has allowed eight runs in 12 innings.
Brian Anderson robbed Hafner of an extra-base hit with runners
on first and second in the eighth, when he snagged a drive just
before crashing into the wall in center for the second out. He then
unleashed a one-hop throw to third to hold the runners. And later,
Chicago manager Ozzie Guillen indicated Anderson -- batting .154 --
won't be sent to the minors anytime soon.
"We can change our mind from one day to the other," Guillen
said. "We're going to stay with him. We have faith in him."
Sizemore had three hits, reached base all five times and scored
two runs for Cleveland. Ben Broussard extended his hitting streak
to eight games with two singles and drove in a run.
The Indians stranded 14 runners.
Lee was 0-2 with a 9.00 ERA in his first three starts against
Chicago, while Vazquez was dominant in winning his first two
outings against Cleveland, going 2-0 with one unearned run in 12
"I was being lucky and playing with fire," Vazquez said. "I
don't like to do that."
Struggling Indians reliever Scott Sauerbeck was designated
for assignment on Friday -- 10 days after he was arrested. Besides
his problems on the mound, Sauerbeck was recently arrested, accused
of fleeing police along with a woman charged with driving his car
while drunk. The Indians have 10 days to trade, release or send the
34-year-old Sauerbeck to the minors. Manager Eric Wedge said the
move was "strictly performance-related." Sauerbeck went 0-1 with
a 6.23 ERA in 24 appearances. The club recalled rookie Rafael Perez
from Double-A Akron to fill his spot. ... Chicago Bulls forward
Luol Deng threw out the ceremonial first pitch. ... Third base
umpire Tim McClelland was a late arrival, so a three-man crew
started the game. ... Chicago SS Juan Uribe was back in the
starting lineup for the first time since missing two games for the
birth of his son.