AJ Pollock led off the ninth inning with a home run off Aroldis Chapman to break a tie and lift the visiting Chicago White Sox to a 3-1 victory over the New York Yankees in the first game of a doubleheader Sunday.
Pollock's homer to left, off a 1-0 fastball from Chapman (0-2), answered a solo shot by Aaron Judge off Kendall Graveman (1-1) in the previous half-inning. Chicago tacked on a run on Adam Engel's RBI double and Chapman was removed after one-third of an inning.
Judge hit his MLB-leading 15th home run into the second deck in left field off Graveman to tie the score 1-1 with one out in the bottom of the eighth. The Yankees had a chance to go ahead after Anthony Rizzo doubled and Giancarlo Stanton was intentionally walked, but Josh Donaldson flied out to deep right-center and Aaron Hicks popped out.
Liam Hendriks struck out two in a perfect ninth for his 13th save in 16 opportunities.
White Sox starter Johnny Cueto allowed six hits, struck out five and walked two in six innings. The 36-year-old right-hander has not allowed a run in 12 innings over two starts this season.
Jameson Taillon allowed five hits and one run, fanned seven and walked one in seven innings for New York.
Chicago broke through in the fourth inning. One-out singles by Jose Abreu, Pollock and Yasmani Grandal pushed home the run for a 1-0 lead.
Cueto appeared to be running on empty in the bottom of the sixth inning. With a 2-0 count on Judge and none out, he asked for and received hydration from the White Sox trainer in the form of water and a sports drink on an 88-degree day. He came back to strike out Judge and soon finished the inning.
But in the seventh, Hicks and Isiah Kiner-Falefa led off with back-to-back singles and Joe Kelly relieved Cueto. Kelly struck out Marwin Gonzalez and then picked Hicks off second. A passed ball moved Kiner-Falefa to second, but Jose Trevino looked at a sinker for strike three.
White Sox shortstop Tim Anderson was not in the lineup for the opener, a day after the ongoing feud between him and Donaldson of the Yankees was re-ignited when Donaldson called him "Jackie," meaning Jackie Robinson. Anderson and the White Sox considered it racist and Donaldson subsequently apologized.
Chicago manager Tony La Russa indicated that Anderson was out of the lineup for rest purposes. Donaldson played and went 0-for-4.
--Field Level Media