What's this? A win I'm not going to complain about? That's right … brace yourselves.
The White Sox overcame 2011 AL Rookie of the Year Jeremy Hellickson and the Tampa Bay Rays Thursday night, defeating them 5-2 behind ace Chris Sale and, well, enough offense.
The story of the night deserves to be Sale, as despite not looking anywhere near his best, tossed seven innings of two-run ball.
It was nice to see him bounce back from letting up a run in the first inning in which his defense did not help him out to throw six more very quality innings. In fact, the only blemish from there on out was the back-to-back two-out walks he issued to the Rays' eight and nine hitters in the top of the second and a home run he let up to Jose Lobaton in the fourth inning.
Sale struck out seven of Joe Maddon's men, and in fact kept Tampa in the infield on 15 of the 17 outs recorded at the plate (8 groundouts). So all-in-all, you have to be pleased with the gut-it-out performance we got from Chris.
And though, like we've grown so used to, the offense wasn't much, it certainly was enough.
After Sale let up the first run inning, the Sox' bats came out hot with an Alejandro De Aza double, Jeff Keppinger RBI-double, Paul Konerko RBI-single, and Conor Gillaspie RBI sacrifice fly.
The other runs were produced when Adam Dunn brought in Alex Rios, who walked to lead off the sixth inning home on a two-run home run, his fourth of the season. I guess you have to be happy with Adam's efforts Thursday night too, because for the first time in a couple of weeks he didn't record a strike out in a game …
The only other 'spoiled opportunity' was in the fourth inning when Alexei Ramirez followed up a Conor Gillaspie walk with a double down the left field line, only to see Gillaspie thrown out at home plate. It was a great relay from Tampa, and some times you just have to tip your cap to the opponent. Luckily it didn't wind up mattering in the end.
To wrap it up, the bullpen did their job, as Matt Lindstrom worked a perfect eight inning and closer Addison Reed overcame a James Loney leadoff single in the ninth to pick up his seventh save of the season, as his ERA lowered to 0.90.
I'm sure you guys can see why, especially with all we've endured already this season, this is a win we 'oughta just shut out mouths and be happy with.
Tomorrow we'll see the mysterious Roberto Hernandez, formerly known as Fausto Carmona, as he'll take on Jake Peavy in the second of the four-game set at 'The Cell.' You can check out more about the matchup here.