Rapid Reaction: Athletics 2, White Sox 0
June, 2, 2013
By Eric Gilmore | Special to ESPNChicago.com
OAKLAND, Calif. -- The Chicago White Sox suffered a 2-0 loss to the Oakland Athletics on Sunday at the O.co Coliseum as the A's completed a three-game sweep.
How it happened: White Sox left-hander Chris Sale pitched another gem but took the loss as his four-game winning streak came to an end. He allowed one run on four hits over six innings, striking out five and walking one. Sale extended his career-high scoreless inning streak to 28, blanking the A's for the first five innings before giving up a run in the sixth. The streak was the longest by a White Sox pitcher since Wilson Alvarez threw 31 straight scoreless innings from Sept. 11-27, 1993. Sale issued a leadoff walk to Coco Crisp in the sixth, and Jed Lowrie singled him to third. Sale struck out the dangerous Yoenis Cespedes, but clean-up hitter Josh Donaldson brought Crisp home with a sacrifice fly to right field. Sale missed his scheduled start on May 22 against Boston because of tendinitis in his pitching shoulder. But he threw three pain-free innings Tuesday against the Cubs before the game was called because of rain and threw 105 pitches Sunday before being relieved by Matt Lindstrom, who opened the seventh. The White Sox were shut out for the sixth time this season. A's right-hander Jarrod Parker blanked the White Sox for 6 1/3 innings, allowing two hits while striking out seven and walking two. First baseman Adam Dunn nearly took Parker deep in the fourth, but his blast hit high off the center field wall near the 400-foot sign, and he settled for a double. Parker struck out Casper Wells to end the inning. The White Sox had only three hits on the day.
What it means: The White Sox extended their losing streak to a season-high six games and fell to 0-5 on their eight-game road trip. They've lost seven straight road games overall. The White Sox remained 5 1/2 games behind first place Detroit in the American League Central race, but they fell into fourth place, a game behind Minnesota.
Outside the box: The White Sox had scored only nine total runs in their previous five games before Sunday, and they faced Oakland in the finale without two of their best hitters in the lineup. First baseman Paul Konerko was out with a stiff neck, and right fielder Alex Rios got a scheduled day off -- his first of the season after 53 straight starts. Konerko and Rios have combined to hit 15 home runs and 49 RBIs. The lineup included reserve Casper Wells in right and Jordan Danks, who was called up Sunday from Triple-A Charlotte, in center. Wells went 0-for-3 with three strikeouts. Danks went 0-for-3.
Off beat: The White Sox entered Sunday's game tied for last in the American League in fielding with a percentage of .982 and second to last in errors with 36, but they've made strides defensively against the A's. After committing an error in three straight games entering the series, the White Sox played error-free ball in their first two games against Oakland and had just one error Sunday, by Jordan Danks. Third baseman Conor Gillaspie made a diving catch in the seventh, robbing Josh Reddick of a hit. One batter later, shortstop Alexei Ramirez ranged far to his left to field Derek Norris' ground ball and made an off-balance throw to first for the out.
Up next: Left-hander John Danks will be on the mound for the White Sox on Monday night at Seattle for the 5.40 p.m. opener of a three-game series against the Mariners. Left-hander Joe Saunders will start for the Mariners.