CHICAGO – Yoan Moncada has a more aggressive approach at the plate, a new position in the field and a strong belief that games like this are going to be the norm for him.
Moncada hit a go-ahead, two-run single in the seventh inning and the Chicago White Sox won a wild home opener, beating the Seattle Mariners 10-8 on Friday.
A day after their home opener was postponed because of inclement weather, the White Sox ended Seattle’s four-game winning streak. The Mariners had been off to a franchise-best 7-1 start.
Chicago took advantage of three errors by shortstop Tim Beckham in the first inning for an early lead, then rallied when the Seattle bullpen couldn’t find the strike zone. The White Sox drew three walks in the seventh, with Moncada’s single off Zac Rosscup making it 9-8 after Cory Gearrin (0-1) hit Welington Castillo with the bases loaded.
Moncada, batting .458 with 10 RBIs through six games, just missed a grand slam in the first when he lined a two-run double against Yusei Kikuchi that deflected off leaping center fielder Mallex Smith’s glove.
“Days like today are going to come in a bunch this season,” Moncada said through a translator.
The White Sox are counting on that from the 23-year-old Moncada in his second full season. A key piece in the deal that sent ace Chris Sale to Boston at the 2016 winter meetings, he led the majors in strikeouts and committed more errors than any other second baseman last season.
But he adjusted his approach at the plate, switched to third base and is looking like a different player in the early going.
Tim Anderson added three hits, including a solo homer in the eighth, for Chicago. He scored four runs and drove in three after missing two games to be with wife Bria for the birth of their second child, daughter Paxton.
Domingo Santana and Dan Vogelbach homered early for Seattle. Ryon Healy and Mitch Haniger hit two-run homers in the sixth for an 8-6 lead.
Ryan Burr (1-0) worked a scoreless 1 1/3 innings in relief for the White Sox. Alex Colome retired all three batters in the ninth for his second save in as many opportunities, and Chicago overcame a shaky start by Reynaldo Lopez.
“We got a lot of gamers on the team, man, and even though we lost that game we showed a lot of fight and it shows a lot about our team,” Beckham said.
Kikuchi gave up six runs – four earned – over five innings in his first start since his father died of cancer over the weekend.
Lopez allowed six runs and six hits. Healy chased him with a tying, two-run drive to the left-field bullpen in the sixth after Omar Narvaez led off with a single. Jace Fry retired the next two batters before Smith singled and Haniger drove a two-run shot to center.
Gordon exits with injury
Seattle second baseman Dee Gordon left the game in the fourth inning because of a tight groin.
Gordon had drawn two walks and scored a run. He was replaced by Dylan Moore.
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