A.J. Pierzynski homered and drove in three runs, Alex Rios singled in the go-ahead run in the eighth inning, and the Chicago White Sox beat the Baltimore Orioles 7-6 on Monday night for their fourth straight victory.
Gordon Beckham also connected for the White Sox, who blew a four-run lead before rallying to secure their season-high sixth consecutive win on the road. Third-place Chicago moved within five games of the lead in the AL Central.
After J.J. Hardy hit a three-run homer in the seventh off Jesse Crain (6-3) to put Baltimore up 6-5, the White Sox regained the lead against Jim Johnson (5-4). Paul Konerko walked, Carlos Quentin singled and Pierzynski hit a sacrifice fly to tie it. Rios then singled under the glove of third baseman Josh Bell to bring home Quentin.
Rios had two hits and is 7 for 11 with four RBIs during Chicago's four-game run.
Sergio Santos struck out the side in a perfect ninth for his 23rd save.
Hardy, who missed the Orioles' previous three games with an ankle injury, went 3 for 5 with two doubles, a homer and four RBIs. Matt Wieters had three hits, but it wasn't enough to prevent Baltimore from absorbing its 10th loss in 13 games.
Hardy's homer made Baltimore the first team in the majors this season to have three players with at least 20. Hardy joined Mark Reynolds (26) and Adam Jones (20). In this game, however, Reynolds went 0 for 4 with three strikeouts and Jones was hitless in five at-bats with two strikeouts.
Chicago went up 4-0 in the second against Jeremy Guthrie, who twice yielded homers on 0-2 pitches. Pierzynski led off with his sixth home run, a drive to center that snapped an 0-for-12 slump. Rios followed with a double, Adam Dunn hit an RBI single and Beckham concluded the flurry with a two-run shot to left.
The Orioles closed to 4-2 in the third. Wieters doubled and scored on a single by Bell, who came to the plate batting .100 without an RBI. Bell took third on a double by Hardy and scored on a sacrifice fly by Nick Markakis.
Hardy hit an RBI double in the fifth, but with runners on second and third and one out, Josh Danks struck out Markakis and got Jones on a grounder.
Guthrie retired 10 straight before Konerko led off the sixth by hitting a grounder that got past Bell for an error. Konerko was thrown out at third on a single by Quentin, who took second on the throw. Pierzynski followed with an RBI single to make it 5-3.