Jake Burger’s game-ending grand slam handed Liam Hendriks his first win since returning from cancer, and the Chicago White Sox beat the Detroit Tigers 6-2 on Sunday for a three-game series sweep.
Hendriks (1-0) worked a 1-2-3 ninth, striking out two. It was the third big league appearance for the All-Star closer since he missed the start of the season after he was diagnosed with stage 4 non-Hodgkin lymphoma.
Hendriks’ win coincided with National Cancer Survivors Day in the United States.
Spencer Torkelson hit a two-run homer for Detroit, which has dropped five of six. Matthew Boyd struck out nine while pitching five innings of one-run ball.
Tigers manager A.J. Hinch said Lange had been on “such a good roll,” but was a “little erratic” in the ninth.
“(The grand slam) makes it sting even more when you can’t finish the game,” Hinch said. “Frustrating day.”
White Sox right-hander Michael Kopech permitted two runs and three hits in seven innings. He struck out nine and walked one.
Torkelson’s fifth homer gave the Tigers a 2-0 lead in the fourth, but Eloy Jiménez responded with an RBI single for the White Sox in the bottom half.
Chicago tied it at 2 on Yasmani Grandal’s bases-loaded single with two out in the sixth. Detroit reliever Will Vest surrendered back-to-back singles to Luis Robert Jr. and Jiménez before walking Andrew Vaughn to load the bases for Grandal.
White Sox manager Pedro Grifol made a flurry of late-game substitutions and said fans were an inning away from seeing Burger at second base if it weren’t for his grand slam.
Grifol tapped Andrew Benintendi to hit for Clint Frazier, and Benintendi singled before Moncada drew a pinch-hit walk. Anderson’s walk set the stage for Burger’s decisive swing.
“You’re hoping for just a fly ball, a sacrifice fly,” Grifol said. “To be honest with you, I didn’t even see that ball go out. I knew when the ball was hit we were going to win the ballgame.”
Tigers: LHP Joey Wentz (1-5, 7.28 ERA) gets the start Monday as Detroit opens a series in Philadelphia.
White Sox: RHP Lucas Giolito (4-4, 4.08 ERA) starts Tuesday as Chicago opens a series in New York against the Yankees.