White Sox pound Athletics from the get-go

OAKLAND, Calif. — Elvis Andrus hit the second pitch of the game for a home run. Yoan Moncada followed him with another.

The White Sox came out swinging Thursday in the land of the old Swingin’ A’s in the opener of a four-game series against the Athletics, and they didn’t stop there.

Moncada homered again in a four-run second, and Eloy Jimenez slammed his 11th homer in the fourth, giving the Sox their first four-homer game of the season. Romy Gonzalez homered in the sixth for his fourth hit and the Sox’ fifth homer, making it 14-0.

Moncada singled, doubled and singled in his next five at-bats, giving him five hits and five RBI in six innings. The five hits tied a career high.

It was plenty of cushion for Cy Young candidate Dylan Cease, who opened with five scoreless innings and notched his career 200th.

Moncada’s first four hits came against left-handers JP Sears and Zach Logue. He was hitting .177 with two home runs and only three multi-hit efforts over 34 games since the All-Star break.

Andrus and Moncada marked the seventh time Sox batters opened a game with back to back homers. It was the first time since Tim Anderson and Moncada on Aug. 17, 2020 at Detroit.

The A’s, who own the worst record in the AL (50-88) released Andrus before he signed with the Sox on Aug. 19.

Riding some momentum after taking two of three from the Mariners at Seattle this week and looking for their seventh win in nine games, the Sox were trying to get within 1 1/2 games the first-place Guardians, who were idle, in the American League Central. They were also trying to stay even in the standings with the Twins, who beat the Yankees.

Cease’s milestone

Cease became the seventh pitcher in Sox history with multiple 200 strikeout seasons, joining Ed Walsh (five) Chris Sale (four), Lucas Gioltio (two), Javier V?zquez (two), Tom Bradley (two) and Gary Peters (two).

It was Cease’s first start since coming one out away from throwing a no-hitter against the Twins Saturday. He was coming off career highs in each of his last two starts with eight innings against the Diamondbacks and his complete-game shutout against the Twins.

Robert still out

Luis Robert was available only to pinch run or possibly defense as he deals with soreness in his left wrist.

“We’re going to see how he feels tomorrow and we’ll go from there,” Cairo said, repeating the standard take on Robert’s wrist.

“We hope so,” Cairo said of Robert possibly playing in the series. “Let’s see how he feels [Friday]. Today he was feeling better. Just got to see.”

Hendriks, Diekman nominated for Clemente Award

Sox pitchers Jake Diekman (Gut It Out Foundation) and Liam Hendriks (South Slydah Society) were named 2022 club nominees for the Roberto Clemente Award, the annual recognition of the major league player who best represents the game through extraordinary character, community involvement, philanthropy and positive contributions, both on and off the field.

Sept. 15 is the 21st annual Roberto Clemente Day, established to honor Clemente’s legacy as a humanitarian.

This and that

Five home runs matched the Sox’ most ever at the Coliseum. Harold Baines, Wayne Nordhagen, Chet Lemon and Carlton Fisk (two) did it on Sept. 27, 1981.

*The Sox were 11-21 against the A’s, including 3-12 at the Coliseum, since the start of the 2017 season.

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