Lane Thomas' grand slam helps Nationals blast White Sox 13-3. Josiah Gray gets the win

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Wednesday, September 20, 2023

WASHINGTON -- - Lane Thomas hit a grand slam and the Washington Nationals routed the Chicago White Sox 13-3 on Wednesday.

Joey Meneses and Dominic Smith also homered for Washington, which had a season high in runs and won back-to-back games for the first time since taking three in a row from Aug. 24-26.

Washington won by at least 10 for the first time since a 14-4 victory over San Francisco on April 29, 2022.

Gavin Sheets drove in two runs for Chicago, which has dropped nine of 12 and 14 of 19. The White Sox (58-95) are 37 games under .500 for the first time since finishing 62-100 in 2018.

Thomas broke the game open after Jesse Scholtens allowed Luis García's single, hit Jake Alu and walked CJ Abrams to load the bases in the third inning. After taking the first pitch, Thomas hammered a curveball to left for his 26th home run and second career grand slam to put Washington up 8-1.

Thomas, who also walked twice and was hit by a pitch, said he made a conscious effort to be more patient at the plate - especially after a postgame conversation Tuesday with his wife.

"I got in the car last night and I was kind of in a bad mood," Thomas said. "She was like 'Just kind of suck it up and stop swinging at those (bad) pitches.' I was kind of surprised that came out of her mouth. I can't have her yelling at me after the game."

Before the blast, Thomas was 4 for 33 lifetime with the bases loaded, including 1 for 13 this season.

Scholtens surrendered six runs in two innings, including Smith's solo homer to lead off the fourth.

Meneses homered for the second day in a row, a two-run shot in the fifth off Deivi García.

"We didn't pitch very well and we didn't hit," White Sox manager Pedro Grifol said. "Nine free passes (via walk or hit batsman), a couple errors. There's not much to really talk about in this game."

Josiah Gray (8-12) earned his first victory since July 22. The right-hander gave up a run on five hits in five innings and struck out four.

Gray, Washington's lone All-Star selection, surpassed his victory total from last season. It was the first time he completed five innings in consecutive starts since doing so 10 times in a row in June and July.

"I think the first goal is to stay healthy, and then you want to perform," Gray said. "You want to go out there every outing and put the team in a position to win. The last two outings, I've been able to do that."

Washington took the lead in the second on Ildemaro Vargas' RBI single off Tanner Banks (0-4). Abrams later added a two-run double to make it 4-1.

TRAINER'S ROOM

White Sox: Chicago activated LHP Garrett Crochet (shoulder) from the injured list and placed RHP Gregory Santos (elbow inflammation) on the 15-day IL. Santos went 2-2 with a 3.39 ERA and five saves in 60 games.

Nationals: RHP Trevor Williams' turn in the rotation will be skipped. Williams has thrown 141 innings after not surpassing 91 innings in each of the last three seasons. "He wants to finish the year off, so I thought the best thing was to skip him one and let him have one more," manager Dave Martinez said. ... Martinez said LHP MacKenzie Gore (finger blister) will not pitch again this season. Gore has been on the injured list since Sept. 9.

UP NEXT

White Sox: After Thursday's off day, RHP Touki Toussaint (4-7, 5.40 ERA) makes his second career start against Boston and first since 2018 when Chicago begins a three-game series Friday at Fenway Park.

Nationals: RHP Jake Irvin (3-6, 4.34), who has a 2.48 ERA in five home starts since July 31, faces Atlanta for the first time as Washington begins a four-game series Thursday.

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AP MLB: https://apnews.com/hub/MLB

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