Smoak continues trend of hot hitting

Smoak continues trend of hot hitting

CHICAGO -- When Justin Smoak was struggling earlier this season, he frequently noted that when things are going rough, even hard-hit balls somehow seem to wind up in defenders' gloves. So naturally, the opposite was true Friday night when he got a single on a high pop-up that traveled all of about 5 feet, but eluded the grasp of White Sox catcher A.J. Pierzynski.

"I honestly didn't expect that to be a hit, but it is what it is," Smoak said with a smile.

All hits look the same in the box score, where Smoak went 2-for-3 after adding a sharp RBI single to right in the eighth inning of the 7-4 loss.

The big first baseman then went 2-for-6 with a home run in Saturday's 10-8 victory. He's raised his average from .173 to .241 over the past 20 games by hitting .333 (27-for-81) with seven home runs, 19 RBIs and 10 runs scored.

He's hit five home runs and 14 RBIs in his last eight games and said it feels good to continue building on his recent run of success.

"That's always the goal, to keep that feel, keep grinding it out, keeping having good at-bats, and I feel like I'm doing that," Smoak said. "I just need to keep going from there."