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Control eludes Giolito in short start, as Sox fall

Chicago offense can't recover after right-hander allows 7 runs over 1 1/3 innings
MLB.com

CHICAGO -- One night after routing the Orioles at Guaranteed Rate Field, the White Sox had the favor returned on Thursday.

Chicago starter Lucas Giolito recorded only four outs, his shortest start of the season, as Baltimore pounced on him for seven runs in a 9-3 White Sox loss. Giolito's ERA rose to 7.53 and he took sole possession of the American League lead for walks allowed (37) and the MLB lead for hit batsmen (10).

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CHICAGO -- One night after routing the Orioles at Guaranteed Rate Field, the White Sox had the favor returned on Thursday.

Chicago starter Lucas Giolito recorded only four outs, his shortest start of the season, as Baltimore pounced on him for seven runs in a 9-3 White Sox loss. Giolito's ERA rose to 7.53 and he took sole possession of the American League lead for walks allowed (37) and the MLB lead for hit batsmen (10).

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"I take what I do very seriously," Giolito said. "I work as hard as I can at it. So when I experience failure like this, it's kind of hard to deal with. All I can do is come back tomorrow, keep working on things and hopefully have a better one."

Things didn't start out poorly for Giolito, but it snowballed quickly as the first inning progressed. The White Sox got a break when Manny Machado was tagged out following an Adam Jones rundown between third and home, but Giolito issued three straight walks to force in the Orioles' first two runs. Giolito then gave up a Chance Sisco two-run single to put the White Sox down, 4-0, before they had a chance to bat.

Video: BAL@CWS: Machado tagged out by Narvaez after rundown

The second inning didn't get any better. Trey Mancini and Jones led off with consecutive home runs off Giolito, the third time this season the Orioles have gone deep back to back. Following a Machado flyout and Jonathan Schoop single, Giolito hit Chris Davis with a fastball and was removed from the game.

White Sox manager Rick Renteria said that despite Giolito's low-key demeanor, the young righty has a very high intensity on the mound. Sometimes that can lead to issues bringing success from bullpen sessions into a game-like atmosphere.

Video: BAL@CWS: Mancini and Jones go back-to-back in the 2nd

"Back to the drawing board, go back and continue to work, see if we can make that jump where he continues to feel comfortable on the mound from the first inning," Renteria said. "He seems to be a guy that if he can get through that first inning comfortably, or even manage it with minimal damage, he seems to settle down and continues to move forward."

The White Sox are not considering sending Giolito to Triple-A Charlotte to re-adjust as they did with Carson Fulmer, Renteria said. Rather, Giolito has shown he can settle down after rough early innings, but he just hasn't done so consistently.

"He's just a young man who's got to continue to minimize the emotional aspect of crossing from preparation into the game and staying focused, relaxed and hammer the zone with strikes," Renteria said.

Video: BAL@CWS: Sanchez makes a smooth sliding play at third

"I'd agree, I feel good physically, my arm feels good, body feels good," Giolito added when asked if his struggles are more mental than physical. "I've been doing a lot of stuff in the gym to get some movement squared away. [I've] just [been] letting the game speed up and letting it get out of control."

Offensively, the White Sox were stymied all afternoon by Baltimore starter Dylan Bundy, who set down the first 10 Chicago hitters before plunking Yolmer Sanchez. Jose Rondon hit a three-run homer later in the fourth, but it was one of only two hits the White Sox managed off Bundy, who struck out a career-high 14 batters in his second career complete game.

Video: BAL@CWS: Bundy strikes out 14 in complete-game win

SOUND SMART
Jace Fry gave up his first hit of the season in the eighth inning, ending his 8 1/3-inning hitless streak to start the season. Fry is still working on a 12 2/3-inning scoreless streak that dates back to Sept. 26, 2017.

HE SAID IT
"With Gio, I expect that we would have a nice clean start from the beginning, but when he doesn't, I still feel like if he gets through it, he'll settle down and continue to hammer away at what he needs to do in order to get deeper into a ballgame, and that was a little different with Carson. With Carson, it was right from the get-go he was struggling, and he had a difficult time extending his outings after the third or fourth because it just kept getting too deep into his pitch count and not really hammering the strike zone as much." -- Renteria, on comparing the struggles of Giolito and Fulmer

Video: BAL@CWS: Renteria on Giolito, Castillo's suspension

UP NEXT
The White Sox travel to Detroit on Friday to begin a three-game set with their division rivals at 6:10 p.m. CT. Reynaldo Lopez (1-3, 2.98 ERA) takes the mound for Chicago, coming off the best start of his career. Lopez threw eight scoreless innings against Texas last Sunday, allowing just two hits and striking out eight. Mike Fiers (4-3, 4.57) goes for the Tigers.

Max Gelman is a reporter for MLB.com based in Chicago.

Chicago White Sox, Lucas Giolito