Abreu, Frazier hit back-to-back HRs; White Sox top Pads 8-1
GLENDALE, Ariz. (AP) Jose Abreu and Todd Frazier hit back-to-back home runs, Carlos Rodon pitched three scoreless innings and the Chicago White Sox defeated a San Diego Padres split squad 8-1 on Sunday.
Rodon gave up one hit in his first start this spring, a single by Rocky Gale. The left-hander walked one and struck out two.
The home runs by Abreu and Frazier came in the fourth inning against Cesar Vargas. Abreu's drive was his first of the spring.
Frazier, who also connected Friday, doubled in the second off starter Robbie Erlin and scored Chicago's first run on Jimmy Rollins' sacrifice fly.
Alexei Ramirez faced his former team for the first time and went 1 for 2 with a walk. The new San Diego shortstop spent his first eight seasons with Chicago after arriving from Cuba.
He got a nice round of applause from the crowd of 8,327 before each at-bat.
''It was really great,'' Ramirez said through a translator. ''I could hear them and it was pretty emotional. I have to say thanks to the White Sox for that.''
Ramirez wanted to play in this one. As a veteran he could have skipped the trip to Camelback Ranch, but he asked to go along.
He singled in the sixth against Jake Petricka and was replaced by a pinch runner.
The 34-year-old Ramirez signed a $4 million, one-year deal with the Padres in the offseason after the White Sox did not pick up his option.
''I was at my home when they called and told me,'' Ramirez said. ''It hurt because I spent so much time in Chicago and formed somewhat of a family.
''At the same time, that's baseball. I'm in San Diego now and thankful for that opportunity, and ready to go.''
Padres: Erlin made his second start of the spring and struck out Abreu in the first inning. The left-hander gave up two hits and one run. In his first appearance, Erlin pitched a scoreless inning Wednesday against the Seattle Mariners.
White Sox: At this time last year, Rodon was hoping to make the White Sox roster just a year out of North Carolina State. He ended up starting three games at Triple-A Charlotte before making his major league debut on April 21. Now he's entrenched in the Chicago rotation and he picked up where he left off last season, when he posted a 3.75 ERA in 23 starts.
''I'm a little more relaxed. I know what I'm doing a little more,'' Rodon said. ''I'm just going out there and working on stuff, fastball, changeups, trying to get better at those things and bring it into the season.''
Rodon was able to cut down on walks as the season went along and he issued only one on Sunday.
''Carlos was throwing strikes,'' manager Robin Ventura said. ''Getting ahead, being able to finish guys off, it was nice.''
White Sox 1B-DH Adam LaRoche left Saturday's game against Kansas City with back spasms. The team said he did not have an MRI and is day to day. Sunday was already a scheduled day off for LaRoche.
Ventura said LaRoche told him he felt ''a lot better'' on Sunday, but the manager also said LaRoche won't play Monday and will be evaluated after that.
Padres: Andrew Cashner starts Monday against the Brewers in Phoenix.
White Sox: Erik Johnson, in the mix for the last rotation spot, will start against the Angels in Tempe against former Chicago lefty Hector Santiago.