Alex Rios was a triple short of the cycle Friday night, leading the Chicago White Sox to a 3-1 win over the Tampa Bay Rays at U.S. Cellular Field. The win pulls the White Sox just a game shy of the Detroit Tigers in the AL Central. The Rays are now 2½ behind the Oakland Athletics for the second Wild Card spot.
It was a bullpen kind of game for both teams as both starters failed to complete six innings and 11 pitchers took the mound. White Sox starter Gavin Floyd was stingy, allowing only two hits in five innings of work. He was uncharacteristically wild though, surrendering five walks to go along with his six strike outs. Rays' starter Jeremy Hellickson gave up nine hits with one walk and only two strikeouts in 5⅔ innings.
Ben Zobrist got the Rays on the board in the top of the first inning, sending a two-out offering from Floyd deep into the South Chicago night. Gordon Beckham and Kevin Youkilis teamed up to tie the game in the third inning, with a little help from Hellickson. Beckham led off with a single, and then advanced to second when Hellickson threw away a pick-off attempt. Youkilis knocked a single through the hole on the right side to score Beckham.
Rios pulled the White Sox ahead with a solo home run in the fourth, and then made it 3-1 in the sixth with a lead-off double. Alexei Ramirez drove him home with a single.
Addison Reed recorded the final two outs to earn the save.