MLB·MLB PLAYOFFS

Garcia, Grandal shine as White Sox down Astros in ALDS

Leury Garcia and Yasmani Grandal homered, and Grandal's borderline baserunning helped the White Sox top the Houston Astros 12-6 on Sunday night to stay alive in their AL Division Series.

Red Sox defeat Rays 6-4 with 13th inning homer, odd wall call in Game 3 of ALDS

White Sox outfielder Leury Garcia rounds the bases after hitting a three-run home run in the third inning of a 12-6 win over the Astros in Game 3 of the American League Division Series on Sunday in Chicago, Il. (Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)

Two big swings by pint-sized Leury Garcia. A rule-testing run by Yasmani Grandal. Solid relief work from Liam Hendriks and company.

Right when the Chicago White Sox got in big trouble, they found a way.

Garcia and Grandal homered, and Grandal's borderline baserunning helped the White Sox top the Houston Astros 12-6 on Sunday night to stay alive in their AL Division Series.

Backed by a boisterous crowd of 40,288, the AL Central champions erased a 5-1 deficit in the franchise's first home playoff game in 13 years, trimming Houston's series edge to 2-1. Tim Anderson collected three more hits, and Ryan Tepera started a stellar finish for Chicago's bullpen after Dylan Cease and Michael Kopech (1-0) struggled.

Houston was hoping to sweep its way into its fifth consecutive appearance in the AL Championship Series. The AL West champions got off to a fast start behind Kyle Tucker, but they failed to record a hit in the last five innings.

"I think we made a statement," Grandal said.

Game 4 of the best-of-five series is scheduled for Monday afternoon, but there is rain in the forecast.

The playoff-tested Astros rolled into Chicago after a pair of impressive victories at home, then jumped out to a 5-1 lead in Game 3. The sweet-swinging Tucker hit a two-run double off Cease in the second and a two-run homer off Kopech in the third.

Houston's fast start silenced the towel-waving crowd, but it got revved up again in the bottom half of the third.

After Grandal's two-run shot just over the wall in left made it 5-3, Yoan Moncada and Gavin Sheets reached on two-out singles. Leury Garcia then looked at two balls from Luis Garcia before Astros manager Dusty Baker replaced his starting pitcher with Yimi Garcia (0-1).

The move backfired for the Astros. Leury Garcia, listed at 5-foot-8 and 190 pounds, drove a 3-1 pitch from Yimi Garcia deep to centre for a 436-foot homer.

The game was tied at 6 when the White Sox went ahead to stay with three runs in the fourth — highlighted by a memorable run by Grandal that rankled Baker and the Astros.

After Jose Abreu's tiebreaking RBI single put runners on the corners with none out, Grandal hit a bouncer to Yuli Gurriel at first. Gurriel tried to come home, but his throw went went off Grandal as the veteran catcher sprinted up the line in the infield grass.

Luis Robert scored, taking out umpire Tom Hallion in the process, and Gurriel was charged with an error. The Astros lobbied for an interference call on Grandal, but the umpires huddled and left the play in place.

Baker then had a long argument with Hallion before returning to the dugout.

"I start running and then all of a sudden he's throwing the ball right at me," Grandal said. "I didn't really think about what was going on at the plate."

Eloy Jimenez capped the big fourth with his second RBI single, and the White Sox put it away with three more runs in the eighth. Leury Garcia doubled in Andrew Vaughn and scored on Anderson's single.

The 16-hit attack for Chicago overshadowed stellar relief by Ryan Tepera, Aaron Bummer, Craig Kimbrel and Hendriks. Tepera worked two innings before Bummer got five outs. Kimbrel got the last out of the eighth before Hendriks finished.

Anderson has 16 hits in six career playoff games, the most by any player in a six-game postseason span.

Red Sox defeat Rays with 13th inning homer, odd wall call in ALDS

Saved by a bizarre bounce and an obscure ruling, the Boston Red Sox beat Tampa Bay 6-4 Sunday night on a walk-off, two-run homer by Christian Vazquez in the 13th inning to move one victory away from eliminating the 100-win Rays from the AL Division Series.

The wild-card Red Sox took a 2-1 edge in the best-of-five matchup. Game 4 is Monday at Fenway Park — Marathon Day in Boston — with Game 5 in St. Petersburg, Florida, on Wednesday, if necessary.

Christian Vazquez #7 of the Boston Red Sox celebrates his game winning two-run homerun in the 13th inning against the Tampa Bay Rays during Game 3 of the American League Division Series at Fenway Park on October 10, 2021 in Boston, Massachusetts. (Winslow Townson/Getty Images)

Tampa Bay rallied from a 4-2 deficit to tie it in the eighth inning and it was still 4-all when Yandy Diaz singled with one out in the 13th. Kevin Kiermaier lined a two-out shot to right-centre that bounced off the short wall in front of the Red Sox bullpen, caromed off right fielder Hunter Renfroe and flew back into the bullpen as Renfroe leaped to try to keep it in play.

It's a good thing he didn't: After the umpires conferred and went to the headsets, they correctly awarded Kiermaier a ground rule double and sent Diaz, who had come all the way home, back to third.

Diaz was halfway from second to third and easily would have scored if the ball remained in play. But baseball Rule 5.05(a)(8) states: "Any bounding fair ball is deflected by the fielder into the stands, or over or under a fence on fair or foul territory, in which case the batter and all runners shall be entitled to advance two bases."

Nick Pivetta struck out Mike Zunino to end the inning, then came bounding off the mound in celebration.

Renfroe walked with one out in the bottom half, then Vazquez hit the first pitch from Luis Patino over the Green Monster to end it.

Kike Hernandez and Kyle Schwarber each had three hits, including a homer, for Boston.

"It doesn't make sense to me," Kiermaier said after it was over. "It's a heartbreaker, plain and simple." 

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