Dominant Sale sets up win as Sox hold off O's
BALTIMORE -- Chicago ace Chris Sale was dominant, spoiling Orioles rookie Tyler Wilson's impressive first Major League start and striking out 12 in the White Sox 3-2 Game 1 win over Baltimore on Thursday afternoon at Oriole Park at Camden Yards.
Sale went 7 2/3 scoreless innings, tallying a season high in strikeouts and holding the O's to just four singles. Baltimore didn't get on the board until Chris Davis' two-run homer -- his third in two games -- off reliever Zach Duke in the ninth.
"Just trying to mix in all my pitches, throw some strikes," Sale said. "The main objective today was just fill innings, go as deep as I could in innings. Runs, walks, hits, all the other stuff, you get a doubleheader, you want to get as far into the game as you can on the first one."
Thursday afternoon's game was immediately followed by the second game of a doubleheader, which made up the April 27 and 28 postponements due to civil unrest in Baltimore.
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
Sox bats do just enough: The White Sox scored their first two runs of the game in the sixth inning on two doubles from Melky Cabrera and Adam LaRoche. Adam Eaton got the inning started with a leadoff walk and scored on the next at-bat, when Cabrera lined a double down the left-field line that tailed away from Orioles outfielder Steve Pearce.
Cabrera then crossed the plate two batters later on LaRoche's line drive that just got over the leaping Adam Jones in center field.
In the ninth, the Sox pushed across what proved to be the winning run before Davis hit his two-run homer in the bottom of the frame. After J.B. Shuck and Gordon Beckham recorded singles,Tyler Flowers grounded into a forceout to plate Shuck, with Beckham's hard slide into second breaking up a potential double play.
Wilson wows in debut start: The righty took a shutout into the sixth inning and kept his cool in his first career big league start. Wilson held Chicago to two runs on five hits and a walk in an impressive 86-pitch outing.
"My job was to go out and deliver a quality start and give us a chance to win and kind of eat some innings," said Wilson, who was recalled from Triple-A before the game. "Eighteen innings is a lot of baseball for one day, especially for a pitching staff to kind of handle. I was grateful to be that 26th man and get up here and eat some innings for the team." More >
Sale's dirty dozen: Sale extended his club record by recording double-digit strikeouts for the 21st time. He entered the eighth inning with 108 pitches, and after getting two outs, he finished with a season-high 120.
"Historically, I have been pretty terrible against this team to be honest with you," said Sale, who had an 0-2 record and 5.06 ERA lifetime against Baltimore. "It was nice to be able to turn that around and get the first one." More >
Davis goes deep ... again: Following Wednesday's two-homer game, Davis continued to show encouraging signs at the plate. He drove Duke's 2-2 curveball over the right-center-field wall for his 11th homer of the season. Davis also has four RBIs over his past two games.
"We're hoping for four [homers] in two days," Orioles manager Buck Showalter said before Game 2. "I don't think he struck out today. Against Chris Sale, that's saying something. [Davis], a couple adjustments he's made, but he's been doing that for a long time. I'm glad to see [it]. ... It would mean a lot for us, for him, to get it going for a while."
Orioles third baseman Manny Machado was tossed in the bottom of the eighth inning by home-plate umpire Toby Basner. Machado thought he had checked his swing but was ruled to strike out to end the inning, and he slammed his bat and helmet down in anger while he voiced his displeasure. He was immediately thrown out and replaced in the top of the ninth by Ryan Flaherty.
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Thursday marked the 11th time in Sale's career that he recorded 12 or more strikeouts, which is the most in the Major Leagues since 2012.