One pitch away from a win, the Chicago White Sox implode in a 4-3, 11-inning loss to the Baltimore Orioles: ‘Just got beat’



Adam Engel raced into foul territory, attempting to track down the final out Thursday against the Baltimore Orioles.

But the Chicago White Sox left fielder, who entered as a defensive replacement in the eighth with the Sox leading by a run, couldn’t hang on to the ball as he neared the side wall.

“My job is to come in and play solid defense, especially late in games,” Engel said. “That’s a play I expect to make.

“Just got to squeeze that one.”

Kyle Stowers’ at-bat with two outs in the ninth continued. And he made the Sox pay two pitches later, hitting a game-tying solo home run off closer Liam Hendriks.

The game went to extra innings, and Anthony Santander drove in Cedric Mullins with a single in the 11th against reliever Jake Diekman to give the Orioles a 4-3 victory in front of 13,905 at Camden Yards.

It was a devastating defeat for the Sox, who lost two of three in the series.

“That was completely on me with the pitch selection,” Hendriks said. “It was a pitch that I very rarely throw in the zone and unfortunately hung that one and he got it. It’s never a good feeling, but especially in a game like (Thursday) where we were grinding through.

“We’re down and we were able to take that lead late. My job is to come in and close the door, and I wasn’t able to do that.”

The Sox remained tied for second with the Minnesota Twins in the American League Central, four games behind the division-leading Cleveland Guardians.

“Wasn’t anything wrong with the way we played today,” Sox manager Tony La Russa said. “Just got beat.”

And in a season filled with injuries, the Sox finished Thursday without starting third baseman Yoán Moncada, who left in the bottom of the fifth with left hamstring tightness. The Sox said he’s day to day.

Moncada received a visit from the training staff after making a great fielding play on a Terrin Vavra bunt to begin the second inning. Moncada singled in the fourth for his second hit of the game but appeared to be favoring his leg as he made his way to first base.

Romy Gonzalez entered in the fifth to play second while Josh Harrison shifted from second to third.

The Sox knotted the game at 2 in the seventh when Gonzalez singled and later scored on a throwing error. They went ahead an inning later when José Abreu drove in Gavin Sheets with a two-out single to left.

Hendriks retired the first two in the ninth, and Stowers hit the foul down the left-field line on the first pitch of his at-bat.

“I just think it was amazing that he got that far,” La Russa said of Engel. “He had a long way to run, and the ball popped out. But it wasn’t an easy play.”

It was the third error of the game for the Sox. The first, when Abreu didn’t cleanly field an Adley Rutschman grounder in the first inning, preceded Santander’s two-run homer that gave the Orioles a 2-1 lead.

Hendriks got ahead 0-2, getting a swinging strike. He went with a curveball, and Stowers connected for the home run.

Hendriks put the sequence on himself.

“At the end of the day, it was just a foul ball,” he said. “I need to make a pitch and I had him exactly where I wanted to and I didn’t execute, and that’s on me. That’s not on anybody else. It’s on me.”

The Sox were retired in order in the 10th and 11th. In the 11th, Luis Robert, who had one-handed swings the last couple of games, had another during his at-bat that ended with a strikeout.

“It hurts a lot every time that I have a bad swing,” said Robert through an interpreter. He had missed time from Aug. 13-19, limited to pinch-running duties in one game because of a sprained left wrist.

Asked if he considered taking Robert out at some point in the game, La Russa said: “You see the three days when he gets one on the nose he still belts it. Hit a long fly ball. A lot has to do with the pitching he was facing.”

Joe Kelly got the Sox out of a jam in the 10th, keeping the Orioles from scoring after they had runners on the corners and no outs.

Rutschman singled to begin the 11th against Diekman, with the automatic runner, Mullins, advancing to third. Santander followed with the game-winning hit to center.

“Show up (Friday) and get after it again,” said Sox starter Lance Lynn, who allowed one earned run on three hits in six innings. “Just come from a (2-4) road trip, kind of a weird one with the makeup game in the middle of it (Monday at Kansas City, Mo.).

“Go home, regroup and we have a three-series homestand (against Arizona, Kansas City and Minnesota), so we’ve got to make a run here when we get home.”

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