CHICAGO (AP) — One day after being yanked from a game for not hustling, Alex Rios busted out big slump in a big way.
Rios hit a grand slam, drove in five runs and had three hits to lead the Chicago White Sox to a 10-6 victory over the Atlanta Braves on Saturday.
Rios had been in a 2-for-20 slump before going 3-for-5. Rios, who also ended a homerless drought of 120 at-bats, insisted that his big day had nothing to do with being pulled from the game on Friday.
"I go about my business the same way every day," he said. "It doesn't matter what happens the night before or whatever. I try to do the same things every day and I try to perform my best.
"I felt a little better today. I felt like I was seeing the ball better. When you see the ball better, it's because you've done some mechanical adjustments."
Rios and White Sox manager Robin Ventura disagreed on whether the benching was necessary, but they were on the same page in believing it didn't have any carry-over effect.
"The other day he was 6-for-6 and there was nothing going on there," Ventura said referring to Rios' performance at Detroit on July 9. "He's just a good player and he had a good day. He came up at the right time.
"He hit a grand slam and had some big hits to help us win. I don't think it had anything to do with last night."
Either way, Rios' slam turned around what appeared to be another lackluster White Sox game into their 10th win in 32 games.
Jake Peavy (7-4), making his first start since June 4 because of a fracture rib, got off to a shaky start. He allowed a two-run homer to Dan Uggla in the second inning and two more runs in the third. But he shut down the Braves during his final three innings.
He allowed seven hits in six innings, and just two of the four runs charged to him were earned.
"I probably came out of the gate a little too fast because I was excited," Peavy said. "I had a little extra adrenaline, but the feel wasn't there. I was able to pull the reins back a little toward the middle and get my feel back a little bit to where I was throwing the ball more consistently to where I wanted it.
"The boys picked me up today. The team came back and Alex got a big hit. It was a fun day."
Braves starter Paul Maholm (9-9) was forced out in the fourth inning because of a sprained left wrist. He was staked to a 4-0 lead but couldn't hold it. He allowed seven runs and seven hits in three-plus innings.