Lawrie sparks Sox to strong finish to road trip

Lawrie sparks Sox to strong finish to road trip

BALTIMORE -- As the Chicago White Sox were enduring a grueling stretch of 19 straight games, the team looked to Brett Lawrie for a burst of energy.

And the second baseman delivered in a big way.

Lawrie went 3-for-3 and homered for the third time in as many days as the White Sox earned a four-game split against the Baltimore Orioles with a 7-1 victory Sunday. Lawrie now has 14 career home runs against Baltimore -- his most against any single team.

"I'm just excited to contribute to the team," Lawrie said. "Every time I step in the box, I'm looking to help the team. That what I'm in there to do."

Chris Sale has been dominant throughout Chicago's start to the season. On Sunday, he became the first pitcher in the big leagues to earn six victories. Sale said Lawrie has been an inspiration to him this season.

"He's the guy that picks you up," Sale said. "Definitely picks you up. He's kind of a spark, really. He got it going for us today."

After dropping the first two games of the series against the Orioles, it might have been easy for the White Sox to look forward to the day off Monday and then get ready for a six-game homestand.

Lawrie discusses series vs. O's

Instead, the team battled hard Saturday and pulled out an 8-7 victory when Jose Abreu hit a tiebreaking RBI single in the ninth inning off Baltimore reliever Vance Worley. Lawrie had given the White Sox an early 3-1 lead with a homer off Kevin Gausman in the fourth, and that proved a much-needed spark.

In the series finale, Lawrie provided Chicago with another lead when he hit a solo shot in the fourth off Ubaldo Jimenez.

"Definitely a full-group effort both days," Lawrie said. "We come here today, do the job and we are able to go back home with a lot of positivity and have a nice off-day to relax."

Lawrie's influence on the team has not been lost on manager Robin Ventura. The skipper has been impressed by Lawrie's everyday work ethic and influence on his teammates.

"What you see is what you get," Ventura said. "It's full throttle all the way. He's just been a good influence, being over here, a veteran guy. He's prepared. Ready to go every day. He enjoys playing."

Todd Karpovich is a contributor to MLB.com based in Baltimore. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.