Back on March 29, James Shields picked up the victory for the White Sox in their season opener against the Royals at Kauffman Stadium.All was right with the world for the South Siders at that time. That contest also happened to mark the veteran hurler's last road win until Friday
Back on March 29, James Shields picked up the victory for the White Sox in their season opener against the Royals at Kauffman Stadium.
All was right with the world for the South Siders at that time. That contest also happened to mark the veteran hurler's last road win until Friday night at Oriole Park at Camden Yards, where the White Sox held on for an 8-6 victory over the Orioles.
Shields was steady as usual, allowing two Trey Mancini solo homers over six innings, while striking out five and walking one. He pitched at least six innings for the 24th time in 2018 and ended a stretch of 12 straight appearances (11 starts) on the road without a victory.
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"This year's been kind of a struggle getting the [wins]," Shields told reporters after improving to 7-16. "I've thrown a lot of quality starts this year, and unfortunately, it just hasn't gone my way. The guys are grinding for me. There's no doubt about that. Tonight was a great night, and I'm glad I could do my part."
"James gave us another quality start," White Sox manager Rick Renteria told reporters. "I still think he wanted to go back out, especially with a five-run lead. I know he didn't want to come out, but I thought it was the right time. It was a good victory for him."
The White Sox built up a five-run lead behind home runs from Avisail Garcia and Omar Narvaez and three hits from Yoan Moncada. But the Orioles scored four in the seventh to creep within one.
Jace Fry and Nate Jones finished off the White Sox second straight victory, and their second victory in four games on this nine-game road trip. Jones picked up his single-season career-best fifth save, and his first since May 22, also against Baltimore. Jones was out from June 13 to Sept. 10 with a pronator strain.
"They kept chipping away," Renteria said. "I guess it wasn't the cleanest game, but it was nonetheless a good effort by everybody, just to keep playing and try to get it done."
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
Cordell gets No. 1: After the Orioles cut the White Sox lead to one in the seventh, Ryan Cordell gave Fry a little more room for error in the eighth with his first career home run in the top half of the frame, which also was his first career hit. Cordell connected on a 3-1 fastball from Tanner Scott to raise the margin to 8-6. The drive had a 107-mph exit velocity and traveled 419 feet per Statcast™.
"It was pretty cool, definitely after that tough bottom half of the seventh inning, to come out and get a little momentum back in our favor was pretty big," said Cordell, who got the ball back from the fan who retrieved it and told reporters he will give the ball to his parents. The fan received a bat and a ball in return.
"I was probably pressing a little bit to get that first one," Cordell added. "Took quite a few ABs, but glad it's out of the way, but we just go from here."
Near miss:Adam Jones almost changed the outcome of this game with one swing of the bat in the Orioles' big seventh. But his drive to the short porch in right with the bases loaded and one out was caught by Garcia with a half-leap against the wall. It scored one on a sacrifice fly instead of four on a grand slam.
HE SAID IT
"It was tough conditions out there today. It was really misty, so the mound was really wet. Overall, pretty good game." -- Shields
Right-hander Reynaldo Lopez is scheduled to make his 30th start of the season, 16th on the road and first vs. Baltimore, with first pitch scheduled for 6:05 p.m. CT Saturday night. Yefry Ramirez gets the start for the Orioles at Oriole Park at Camden Yards. Lopez has received a no-decision in seven of his last eight starts, with the lone win coming against the Yankees in a seven-inning, one-run outing.
Scott Merkin has covered the White Sox for MLB.com since 2003. Follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin and Facebook and listen to his podcast.