CHICAGO (AP) - Matt Garza made a poor pitch to one of the hottest hitters in the game, giving up a homer to Paul Konerko in the second inning Tuesday night.
After that he was ready to challenge the White Sox and give the Cubs a chance at another victory over their crosstown rivals. Then a big storm washed out his night after five innings.
``We were just looking at that (incoming weather) from the start. It was 'How long would it let me keep playing?' It's one of those things. I had good stuff tonight, I'm not gonna lie,' Garza said after the White Sox pulled out a 3-2 victory.
``I was just challenging guys,' he said. ``Changeup to Konerko, just left it up. I think he was sitting in because in the past I usually just pitch him fastballs in. He jumped that changeup. It wasn't a great pitch - it was the right pitch - it just wasn't a great pitch.'
But with the White Sox nursing a 2-1 lead going into the bottom of the fifth, Garza was pitching with a purpose.
``Just kept attacking. I looked up in the bottom of the fifth. I walked out and I only had 70-some pitches and I was like 'Oh, yes! I'm gonna go deep!', and then the rain came,' he said.
``One of those nights where you wish it was just clear skies and ready to go.'
The Cubs had two runners on with one out before the 1 hour and 44-minute delay. When play continued, Aramis Ramirez hit a sacrifice fly off reliever Jesse Crain to tie the game, but that was it for the offense.
The Cubs had two runners on in the eighth after pinch-hitter Kosuke Fukudome singled to end a 10-pitch at-bat and Starlin Castro had an infield single. But White Sox reliever Sergio Santos came in and struck out Ramirez to end the threat.
``We just couldn't cash in,' Cubs manager Mike Quade said. ``Fuke has his great at-bat, Cassie with the infield hit. We had our shot right as the rain came to add on, fortunately it at least got us even. We did have a shot in the eighth inning, that's for sure.'
Carlos Pena, who struck out to end the game, earlier hit his 13th homer, a solo shot off White Sox lefty Mark Buehrle. It was his second homer in as many nights.
``I wasn't trying to do much with that pitch and something big happened. Sometimes the less you try, the better,' Pena said. ``Especially against a guy like Buehrle, who is a magician on the mound.'
Jeff Samardzija (5-3) came on to pitch in the bottom of the sixth. He gave up a leadoff double to Alexei Ramirez in the seventh before Cubs second baseman DJ LaMahieu made a nice stop behind the bag on A.J. Pierzynski's grounder as Ramirez had to stop at third on the infield single.
After Alex Rios popped out, Brent Morel delivered a sacrifice fly to center for a 3-2 lead for the White Sox.
Castro continued his stellar play at shortstop for the Cubs with two more defensive gems, including one to retire Pierzynski on a slow roller past the mound to end the fourth.
Notes: Pena's homer was just his second against a left-hander this season. ... Castro had his 29th multi-hit game of the season. He has drawn rave reviews from White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen, himself a former major league shortstop. ``Amazing,' Guillen said of Castro, who is only 21.
The Associated Press News Service
The Associated Press
All Rights Reserved