Rapid Reaction: White Sox 6, Astros 1
August, 28, 2013
By Doug Padilla | ESPNChicago.com
CHICAGO -- The Chicago White Sox won their fifth consecutive series with a 6-1 victory Wednesday over the Houston Astros.
How it happened: Chris Sale struck out 12 and pitched into the ninth inning to earn his 10th victory of the season. Avisail Garcia hit his first home run as a member of the White Sox and drove in three. Leury Garcia, in the leadoff spot, walked twice, scored two runs and delivered a sacrifice fly for a run in the eighth. Jeff Keppinger, in his second turn as the No. 3 hitter, had two hits and drove in a run. The White Sox have now won 10 of their past 12 games, going 4-2 on the homestand after a 6-1 road trip.
What it means: If there is one thing Sale knows how to do, it's how to rebound from a disappointing outing. His 12 strikeouts Wednesday came after he gave up eight runs to the Rangers in his previous start. He also gave up eight runs on April 13 at Cleveland and returned to hold the Blue Jays to two earned runs one outing later. After giving up a season-high 10 hits on Aug. 1 to the Indians, he came back to hold the Yankees scoreless over 7 1/3 innings.
Outside the box: Sale hit two milestones by piling up strikeouts against the Astros. He now has 193 strikeouts on the season, a career best, passing last season's mark of 192. He also became the first White Sox pitcher to record four games with 12-plus strikeouts in a single season. He had been tied with Javier Vazquez (2006) and Ed Walsh (1910) with three each.
Off beat: It was the attack of the Garcias in the seventh inning as Leury walked and scored the go-ahead run, while Avisail hit a three-run home run for some cushion. After Leury Garcia's walk, the speedster stole second and went to third on an overthrow. He made it home on a fly ball to shallow center. Avisail Garcia's home run later in the inning was his first with the White Sox.
Up next: After an off day Thursday, the White Sox will open a three-game series at Boston on Friday with Hector Santiago (4-7, 3.25 ERA) facing the Red Sox's Ryan Dempster (6-9, 4.77).