AMERICAN LEAGUE ROUNDUP : Though Belle Has His Revenge, White Sox Get Last Word, 6-5

From Associated Press

Take that, Albert Belle said with his bat, uncorking his third home run in as many games.

Take that, the Chicago White Sox answered with a 6-5 victory over the Indians on Thursday at Cleveland.

This was a special game for Belle, a series-opener against the White Sox, who had caused him much embarrassment and, potentially, more money by complaining that he had a corked bat the last time they played, last weekend.

He did then. Presumably he didn’t Thursday, when his three-run homer, his 29th of the season, tied the score, 4-4.


“The guy’s a great hitter, corked bat or no corked bat,” Chicago’s Frank Thomas said. “He came out tonight and showed us what he could do.”

Thomas did too, hitting his 35th homer for the White Sox, who stretched their AL Central lead to three games over the Indians by winning the 17th of their last 21 games, 11 of 12 on the road.

The winning run scored in the eighth inning when, behind, 5-4, the White Sox got singles by Julio Franco and Robin Ventura. Warren Newson bunted and Murray slipped as he fielded it, throwing wildly past first to let Franco score the tying run. Mike LeValliere’s sacrifice fly made it 6-5.

“The grass was wet, and when Eddie tried to make the throw, he was off balance,” losing pitcher Dennis Martinez (9-5) said. “You cannot blame one guy.”

Wilson Alvarez (11-5) gave up five runs--four of them unearned--and six hits in 7 2/3 innings. He retired the last 14 hitters he faced.

Toronto 9, Texas 3--Paul Molitor hit two two-run homers and scored four runs at Toronto as the Blue Jays won their fifth in a row.


Toronto has won 11 of its last 15 games to move six games under .500 for the first time in a month.

Molitor, who hit his 10th and 11th homers, also scored the go-ahead run in the fifth inning. He reached on a fielder’s choice, went to second on Joe Carter’s walk, took third on a wild pitch and scored on John Olerud’s sacrifice fly to put the Blue Jays on top, 4-3.

Oakland 4, Baltimore 3--Geronimo Berroa singled home Mike Bordick from second base in the ninth inning, making a winner out of relief pitcher Dennis Eckersley (3-4) at Oakland.

With the score tied, 3-3, Bordick opened the ninth with a single off Mark Eichhorn (5-4) and pinch-hitter Scott Hemond sacrificed. One out later, Scott Brosius walked and Berroa lined his game-winning single to center.

Milwaukee 7, Minnesota 3--Jose Valentin hit a three-run homer and the Brewers scored all their runs with two out in a victory at Milwaukee.

Valentin greeted right-handed reliever Carl Willis with his eighth homer on a 1-and-0 pitch to cap a four-run sixth inning.


Fellow Milwaukee rookies Matt Mieske and Mike Matheny hit back-to-back two-out homers off Jim Deshaies (5-10) in the second for a 2-1 Milwaukee lead.

Milwaukee starter Bill Wegman (7-3) surrendered seven hits in seven innings to snap a personal three-game losing streak.