Personal accomplishments mean little to Chris Sale if he’s not helping the Chicago White Sox win.
Looking to bounce back from a frustrating defeat, the left-hander tries to keep the White Sox from an eighth consecutive loss Friday night against the visiting Texas Rangers.
Sale (6-3, 3.01 ERA) had yielded one run and struck out 39 while walking three over 22 2-3 innings during a three-start winning streak. He allowed one hit heading into the seventh Sunday at Tampa Bay before Asdrubal Cabrera hit a two-run homer in the 2-1 defeat.
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"We had ’em pretty much where we wanted, and it was a stupid mistake walking the guy (ahead of Cabrera), then a fastball right down the middle and you lose the game," Sale said. "It was really nothing more than that."
The result overshadowed a 12-strikeout performance for Sale, who can become the first to fan at least that many in five straight starts since Pedro Martinez in 1999. Sale’s 61 strikeouts since May 23 are by far the most in the majors during that time, but that doesn’t matter to a veteran who took the blame for his recent loss.
"Plain and simple, I got beat," he said.
Sale’s recent run of dominance included a 9-2 win at Texas (36-31) on June 3 in which he gave up three hits and struck out 13 over seven scoreless innings.
Looking to avoid dropping eight straight for the second time in three seasons, the White Sox (28-37) have scored more than four runs only once in the 14 games that followed Sale’s gem at Texas.
They’ve batted .141 with 42 strikeouts while totaling five runs in the last five and managed 13 hits during a four-game home-and-home sweep at the hands of Pittsburgh.
Former Ranger Geovany Soto homered for one of Chicago’s three hits Thursday in a second consecutive 3-2 home defeat to the Pirates.
"We are out here grinding and fighting every day to get the win," Soto said of the White Sox, who are 5-30 when scoring three or fewer runs. "I feel we are in the same boat and everybody is pulling the same way. It’s going to turn around."
Avisail Garcia entered June batting .323, but is hitting .132 in 15 games this month. His slump began by going 0 for 11 while the White Sox lost two of three at Texas.
Colby Lewis (6-3, 4.37 ERA) gave up a two-run homer to Adam Eaton and five other hits in seven innings of a 15-2 win June 2 to lower his ERA to 1.24 while winning a fifth straight start versus Chicago.
Though his last two starts at U.S. Cellular Field came in 2011 and ’14, Lewis did not yield a run and went the distance in both.
The right-hander has allowed three runs and gone seven innings in each of his last two outings, most recently in Saturday’s 11-7 victory over Minnesota.
"I’ve got to keep it close," Lewis said. "That’s it."
He’ll try to help the Rangers rebound after their three-game winning streak against the Los Angeles Dodgers ended when Keone Kela balked home a run with two outs in the ninth of Thursday’s 1-0 loss at Chavez Ravine.
"It was a balk," manager Jeff Banister said. "It was very slight, but it was there."
Chicago native Adam Rosales should be in the lineup considering he’s 7 for 14 with three home runs versus Sale.
Joey Gallo began his career by going 5 for 12 with two homers and five RBIs in three games against the White Sox just over two weeks ago, but has hit .190 with three home runs and five RBIs in 12 contests since.