Thursday, April 10, 2014
New year, new result vs. Indians
By Doug Padilla
CHICAGO -- There was more evidence that the Chicago White Sox's remodeling project is headed in the right direction when the team easily handled the Cleveland Indians 7-3 in the first meeting of the season Thursday night.
That would be the same Indians team that won 17 of the 19 matchups between the teams last season and made it into the postseason based largely on their dominance of the White Sox. To put it another way, the Indians were 22 games over .500 in 2013 while going 15 games over .500 against the White Sox alone.
Manager Robin Ventura said that revenge wasn't on the minds of the players, but starting pitcher John Danks was well aware of the situation.
"We didn't joke about much last year; it was a tough year," Danks said. "But we joked we deserved a playoff share from them for basically helping them into the playoffs."
Danks took his own thumping from Cleveland last year. In two starts (10 innings) against the Indians, he gave up nine runs (seven earned) and 10 runs. In a September outing, he gave up seven runs (six earned) in only four innings.
"That's a good team over there," Danks said. "It's not an easy lineup. I felt like I was fortunate to get out of the first few innings the way I did and settle down and give us a chance to win. I'm certainly going to have to be better than that next time we face them because that's a good team over there."
The way Ventura saw it, this is a different year so why not expect different results?
"You continue to focus on what we're doing right now and the things that are good instead of thinking about things last year," Ventura said. "And I think a lot of it is just the feeling is different so far, offensively for us that we didn't have last year. There is definitely a different vibe in being able to score and come back if you get down that wasn't necessarily there last year."
The White Sox trailed 2-0 after one inning and were tied 3-3 after three innings, but the offense continued to deliver and the bullpen was solid behind Danks, with Daniel Webb and Matt Lindstrom delivering three scoreless innings. Jose Abreu hit two home runs, and Alexei Ramirez had another as he has at lease one hit in all 10 games this season.
When it was over, the White Sox had their first victory over the Indians since April 24 of last year, ending a 14-game losing streak. Danks' last victory over the Indians was nearly two years to the day, getting it on April 11, 2012.