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Marte, Sox in giving mood
Well, at least the winning run didn't score on an error. Small consolation for a White Sox team that is falling into the habit of giving games away.
Friday night's gift, courtesy of a bases-loaded walk from Damaso Marte to Bobby Higginson in the eighth inning, gave the Tigers a 5-4 victory.
The loss was a season-high sixth in a row for the Sox. In their last three losses, the Sox have let the winning run score twice on errors and now a walk.
"It's frustrating," Sox manager Ozzie Guillen said. "We start thinking about what's next."
Adding to the problems is designated hitter Carl Everett, who had to leave the game in the eighth inning after legging out an infield single. Everett left with a strained lower left quadriceps. He's listed as day-to-day.
"If that kid goes down," Guillen said, "we're talking serious problems."
The trade deadline is 3 p.m. Saturday and Guillen might not know much before then whether Everett will be lost for just a day or two or longer.
It's just one more thing for Guillen to fret over, on top of an anemic offense and lack of execution.
Making matters more frustrating Friday was the Sox's ability to battle back on two different occasions after falling behind.
"Tonight we showed some life," catcher Jamie Burke said. "We got the runs when we needed them."
But every time the Sox rallied, the Tigers would come right back.
"We have to shut down the other team and we couldn't," Guillen said.
Detroit took a 2-0 lead in the first inning when Dmitri Young hit a towering two-run homer off Jon Garland.
It looked like those two runs would be all the Tigers would need until a downpour caused a 61-minute delay and forced Tigers starter Wilfredo Ledezma out of the game after he'd thrown three no-hit innings and struck out four.
The Sox tied the game with two runs in the sixth. Their only two hits were bunt singles. A two-base error scored one run and a sacrifice fly the other.
But the Tigers came right back in the sixth. Omar Infante's leadoff triple, Carlos Guillen's RBI double, a groundout and a sacrifice fly scored two runs.
Again the Sox tied the game, this time in the eighth, but they squandered a chance for a big inning.
Burke and Aaron Rowand singled to put runners on first and second with nobody out. But Willie Harris couldn't get a bunt down in two attempts and ended up striking out. Then Carlos Lee singled in Burke and Paul Konerko singled in Rowand to tie the game 4-4.
Everett's infield single loaded the bases with one out, but Joe Borchard failed to get a run home when he struck out and Guillen made a brilliant play up the middle to get a force out that ended the inning.
"We have to do the little things," Guillen said. "We're not going to win if we don't take advantage [of those situations].
Marte started the eighth and gave up a leadoff single to Alex Sanchez. Infante popped his bunt attempt up for an out, but Guillen singled to put runners on first and second.
Marte stuck out Young for the second out, but walked Rondell White to load the bases for the left-handed hitting Higginson.
After falling behind 3-0, Marte worked the count full but missed badly on ball four. It's the second time this season Marte walked in a winning run, the other coming July 4 against the Cubs.
"You're going to lose a lot of games walking people," Guillen said.
The Sox have lost nine of their last 13 road games, with five games remaining on this seven-game trip. The six-game losing streak is their longest since a six-gamer August 12-20, 2002.
"Things aren't going our way right now," Burke said.