03/13/10 6:50 PM EST
White Sox miss chances vs. Cubs
Kotsay's nice day wasted in loss to crosstown rival
By Scott Merkin / MLB.com
at Las Vegas, Nev.
Saturday, March 13
Cubs at the plate: Jeff Baker delivered a two-run double to put the Cubs on the scoreboard first during a three-run second inning. Baker's double scored Kevin Millar and Geovany Soto. Catcher Robinson Chirinos followed with a run-scoring double of his own. The Cubs batted around to score four runs in the eighth, going back ahead on Josh Vitters' fielder's choice RBI grounder. White Sox at the plate: Mark Kotsay singled twice and drove in two runs, while Juan Pierre singled, doubled, reached on an error and laid down a perfect sacrifice bunt during a four-run fifth inning. C.J. Retherford, who has shown the offensive pop talked about during a strong Arizona Fall League effort, picked up his fifth RBI in nine games.
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Cubs on the mound: Ryan Dempster looked extremely sharp during his three-inning stint. The right-hander fanned two and didn't issue a walk, giving up one hit and one run. That run scored in the third inning due to errors committed by shortstop Ryan Theriot and Baker at third base. Dempster threw 26 of his 44 pitches for strikes and has not given up a run in five innings this spring.White Sox on the mound: Lucas Harrell's afternoon ended with a thud, as the right-hander was knocked to the ground on a hard-hit Baker grounder up the middle to end the fourth inning. Harrell got up to make the play, finishing his day at 56 pitches. The young hurler, who figures to start the 2010 campaign with Triple-A Charlotte, struck out two, walked one and gave up three runs. Worth noting: Sam Fuld didn't exactly rip the baseball while going hitless during the two games in Las Vegas, but he made his presence known defensively on Saturday. On Ramon Castro's medium deep fly ball in the fourth inning, the Cubs left fielder made a perfect one-hop strike to Soto to nail Andruw Jones at the plate by two steps. At the time, it helped the Cubs preserve a 3-1 lead. Cactus League records: White Sox 4-6-2; Cubs 7-4 Up next: Sunday marks the first and only matchup between the White Sox and the Reds this spring. Cincinnati shares a complex with Cleveland in Goodyear, but the Reds just moved into the Cactus League in 2010. Matt Maloney gets the 3:05 p.m. CT start for the Reds, while John Danks makes his third trip to the mound for the White Sox. Danks has not given up a run in six innings during his two previous starts. Look for many of the regular White Sox position players who took part in Big League Weekend to get a rest on Sunday.
The Cubs travel to Tempe for a 3:05 p.m. CT contest against the Angels. Randy Wells makes his third spring start and has been equally as effective as Danks. The right-hander has yielded one hit in five innings, with four strikeouts and no walks. The Cubs will be in the fourth day of a stretch in which they play 13 of 17 contests through March 25 on the road.
Scott Merkin is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.