Thomas homers twice in win

CHICAGO (AP) -- Carlos Lee's bat helped get the Chicago White Sox

another wild win and put him closer to making club history.

Lee extended his career-best hitting streak to 26 games, going

3-for-5 with a run scored and an RBI in Chicago's 10-8 win over the

Atlanta Braves on Saturday night.

It's the longest hitting streak in the majors after Jeff Kent's

25-game streak was snapped earlier in the night.

The White Sox left fielder also can tie the franchise record set

by Albert Belle in 1997 with another hit on Sunday.

"Anytime you can do that, it's special," Lee said. "Albert

Belle was a great hitter. That would be a nice accomplishment."

Lee lined a single just out of the reach of Braves second

baseman Nick Green in the third to keep his hitting steak alive. He

then stole second and scored on Joe Crede's RBI single.

He singled again in the fourth and added a run-scoring single in

the sixth that gave the White Sox a two-run cushion.

Lee got plenty of help from first baseman Frank Thomas, who

homered twice and passed his own milestone. Thomas hit career

homers 432 and 433, moving him past Cal Ripken Jr. into 31st place

on the all-time home run list.

"Frank looks great at the plate right now," Lee said. "You

guys see it. He's feeling really good at the plate. As long as he's

patient, he can do this every day."

Juan Uribe was 2-for-5 with a three-run double for Chicago,

which has scored 10 or more runs in three of four games.

Thomas hit a solo homer in the fourth to make it 5-0, though it

did come with some confusion. Thomas' 14th homer cleared the

right-center fence, then bounced back onto the field. Thomas stood

at second for several seconds until umpire Larry Poncino finally

ruled it a home run, allowing Thomas to trot home.

Esteban Loaiza (7-3) was hit hard, but stayed in the game long

enough to earn the win. He gave up six runs in six innings on eight

hits, walking three and striking out six.

Shingo Takatsu pitched the ninth to get his first major league

save. He's the all-time Japanese saves leader with 260.

"In Japan, this is standard," Takatsu said through a

translator. "This is my first one in the U.S. I was really excited

to get the first one here."

Takatsu hasn't been handed the closer's job, though he appears

to be the favorite -- for now. The right-hander, who struggled badly

in spring training, has thrown 20 1-3 scoreless innings. He retired

three left-handers in the ninth.

"That's why we took a chance at putting him in that role,"

manager Ozzie Guillen said. "In spring training, I would have been

afraid to use him against anybody. As the season has continued to

go on, he's made good pitches against righties and lefties."

Guillen was ejected in the sixth by umpire Gerry Davis for

arguing balls and strikes. It was the first career ejection for

Guillen, and he stayed on the field for several minutes before

finally leaving to a loud standing ovation.

"Arguing balls and strikes is wrong. But the last two games, I

felt like there were a couple of pitches off the plate and we

didn't get the call," Guillen said. "I have to do that to protect

my players, and I'll do anything to do it."

Loaiza retired eight of the first 10 hitters he faced and didn't

give up a hit until the fourth inning, when Green singled to right

and scored on J.D. Drew's homer to left. The Braves put two more

runners on, but stranded them when Loaiza struck out Andruw Jones

swinging to end the inning.

Loaiza, a 21-game winner last season, got in trouble again in

the fifth. Rafael Furcal drove in Marrero with a double, Green

singled to score Furcal and Chipper Jones hit a two-run homer to

tie it at 6.

Chicago went ahead 7-6 in the fifth when Paul Konerko walked,

went to second on a bunt by Timo Perez and advanced to third on

Green's throwing error. He scored on Miguel Olivo's grounder.

John Thomson (5-4) allowed seven runs -- six earned -- on 10 hits

in five innings for Atlanta. He walked three and struck out seven.

"It was tough on both pitchers tonight," Braves manager Bobby

Cox said. "We made a great comeback. Five runs down is hard to do

and we did it. We just couldn't find a way to hold them."

The Braves added two runs in the eighth on Marrero's RBI single

and run-scoring fielder's choice by Mark DeRosa.Game notes
Thomas started at first base for the first time this

season. He's getting some work in the field before the White Sox

begin a six-game road trip to two NL cities. ... Julio Franco needs

two RBI to break Pete Rose's record of 25 by a player over the age

of 44.