OAKLAND — Jimmy Rollins hit a tiebreaking homer off closer Sean Doolittle with two outs in the ninth inning and the Chicago White Sox beat the Oakland Athletics 5-4 on Tuesday night.
A native of the Bay Area who was signed to a minor league deal by the White Sox in February, Rollins connected on a 2-2 pitch from Doolittle (0-1) after Chicago’s bullpen blew a two-run lead in the eighth.
Thanks to starting the season against the A’s, the White Sox are 2-0 on the road for the first time since 2011.
Yonder Alonso and Jed Lowrie drove in two runs apiece for the A’s. Oakland has lost 13 of its last 18 against Chicago.
Rollins’ first home run of the season bailed out Chicago’s bullpen after starter Jose Quintana was saddled with the 53rd no-decision of his career, most in the majors since 2012.
Quintana allowed two runs over 5²⁄³ innings with seven strikeouts and left with a two-run lead before Oakland rallied for two runs in the eighth off Zach Duke and Jones.
The flu is apparently working its way through the Athletics’ clubhouse. Oakland ace Sonny Gray was scratched from his opening day start Monday and sent to the hospital with possible food poisoning, though he now says it might have been a 24-hour flu bug. Fellow starting pitcher Kendall Graveman was also not feeling well and spent the day trying to recover, though he is expected to make his scheduled start on Thursday.
“I’ve had this Purell hand dispenser in here for years and now everybody doesn’t think I’m so crazy,” Oakland manager Bob Melvin said. “We had [head athletic trainer Nick Paparesta] address the team and go over what we can try to do to combat that. We’re going to do the best we can.”
Gray makes his delayed season debut today.
By C.J. Peterson Special to S.F. Examiner OAKLAND — Upon returning to the Bay Area after an 0-3 road trip…