Lance Lynn spent more than an hour between appearances on the mound Wednesday against the Kansas City Royals.
What does a starting pitcher do during that stretch?
“I played cards,” Lynn joked. “No, I shot twice (in the tunnel). She had hot packs all the time. Ride the bike. It was an hour and 10 minutes of staying hot. I am too old to sit.
A rain delay didn’t appear to affect the Chicago White Sox right-hander, who allowed one run on four hits in six innings in a 4-1 victory in front of 19,753 at Guaranteed Rate Field.
“As soon as the first inning, the ball jumped out of his hand,” Sox manager Tony La Russa said. “And when he jumps, he has life. He makes all of his companion pitches harder because they all look the same.
“That’s another advantage in that rotation. You know what he’s capable of if he’s himself. It sure looks like it.
Lynn struck out eight and didn’t allow a walk, helping the Sox win two of three in the series.
“My favorite part of the afternoon was (Lynn) and her teammates, they weren’t distracted,” La Russa said. “I really liked our concentration. Lynn led the way and we jumped in early with some runs.”
Lynn was supported offensively by Jose Abreu, who hit a three-run homer in a game that featured a 65-minute rain delay.
The rain came in the bottom of the second with the Sox leading 1-0. Royals starter Brady Singer returned after the delay and struck out Adam Engel to end the inning.
Tim Anderson led off the third for the Sox with a single. He moved to second on a one-out single by Eloy Jimenez, who went 3-for-4 to extend his hitting streak to nine games.
Abreu followed with his 14th home run. He has homered in three of his last four games and is slashing .375/.423/.574 with 12 doubles, five home runs and 23 RBIs in his last 35 games.
“Everyone gets better if you share the responsibility of starting rallies, moving them around and moving them around,” La Russa said.
The Sox had 12 hits, their third straight game with at least 10.
“We’re all clicking,” said first baseman Andrew Vaughn, who went 2-for-4 with one run. “Chaining hits together, everyone was hitting the ball hard and finding holes and we were putting them all together and scoring runs, which is good.
“We presented more than 10 (hits) today. It’s a huge boost for our offense. Everybody from one to nine goes up and has fun and it’s good.”
Lynn felt good before and after the delay. She allowed three singles, two to Michael Massey, former student of Brother Riceand a solo home run to Bobby Witt Jr.
“When you look at the grand scheme of things, you’re probably looking two up because you had to tunnel (during the delay),” Lynn said. “I threw twice to a receiver. So you’re looking at two more chances in the fourth inning by that point (game resumes). So getting past sixth was good.
“I would have liked to go deeper, but an hour late that wouldn’t have been smart.”
Relievers Jake Diekman (two), Kendall Graveman (three) and Liam Hendriks (one) combined for six strikeouts over the final three innings as the Sox finished a 4-2 homestand.
By winning two of three against the Oakland Athletics and Royals, the Red Sox won back-to-back home series for the first time since winning two of three against the Seattle Mariners April 12-14 and the Tampa Bay Rays April 15. to April 17.
The Sox remain two games behind the Minnesota Twins in the AL Central. Before Tuesday’s game, Sox general manager Rick Hahn spoke about wanting to see the team. recover the “arrogance” you showed in the past.
Lynn said winning helps in that department.
“Day in and day out, we just have to keep playing hard, put together quality at-bats and throw our pitches,” Lynn said. “When all is said and done and we do that and start winning some games, that’s when the arrogance comes back. It’s hard to have arrogance when you’re playing like (shit).”