Giolito excels as White Sox cruise past Tigers
CHICAGO — Chicago White Sox right-hander Lucas Giolito spotted his teammates in the clubhouse after he earned his first career win Sunday afternoon.
Moments later, Giolito was drenched in beer, Gatorade and anything else they could pour on his head.
“It’s a huge relief,” Giolito, 23, said. “Last year didn’t go the way I wanted it to. And now I get the opportunity to be back up here again, I just want to take that opportunity and do everything I can to take advantage of it. I’m very happy I was able to get the first ‘W,’ and I’m looking forward to more.”
If Giolito continues to pitch like the way he did Sunday, plenty more victories could be on the way. He allowed three hits in seven scoreless innings, and the White Sox rolled to a 7-1 win over the Detroit Tigers.
Giolito (1-1) threw 72 of 104 pitches for strikes. He walked three and struck out four in his second start with the White Sox and the sixth start of his career.
Chicago acquired Giolito and several other prospects from the Washington Nationals during the winter in exchange for outfielder Adam Eaton. The 6-foot-6, 255-pound hurler overcame serious arm injuries and made 97 starts in the minor leagues before earning his first win.
Detroit manager Brad Ausmus said Giolito (1-1) stood out from other rookies he has watched.
“He wasn’t one of these young pitchers that comes up throwing 95 to 97 mph,” Ausmus said. “He pitched. He hit 92, 93, but he pitched. He used four pitches and he threw them for strikes. He used changeups, even against right-handed hitters. He did a nice job.”
Matt Davidson powered the White Sox at the plate with a three-run homer. Tim Anderson, Tyler Saladino, Kevan Smith and Yolmer Sanchez each drove in one run apiece as Chicago (52-77) won the rubber match of the series.
Ian Kinsler hit a solo home run in the eighth inning to avoid a shutout loss for Detroit (56-73).
Left-hander Matthew Boyd (5-8) drew the loss after giving up five runs on seven hits in six innings.
A big third inning gave the White Sox a 5-0 advantage. Anderson started the scoring with a double down the left-field line that scored Sanchez. Anderson scored moments later on a Saladino’s single.
Three batters later, Davidson hit a three-run home run to cap the outburst. The shot to right-center field marked Davidson’s 23rd home run of the season and his first since July 31.
“That third inning is what cost us the game,” said Boyd, who altered his mechanics in between starts to simplify his delivery. “Three of those hits out of the five, I felt good about my pitch. The other two, I didn’t execute. Unfortunately, that last one against Davidson really cost us the game.”
Detroit loaded the bases with two outs in the seventh as Giolito battled to finish the inning. Jose Iglesias hit a towering fly ball down the left-field line that third base umpire Nick Mahrley ruled as a grand slam. But all four umpires convened and overturned the call on the field as they ruled the ball was foul.
“It was pretty easy to see foul,” said Davidson, who watched from third base. “It gets bright out there, so you kind of have to watch it the whole way with the glare of the sun off those seats. It was foul.”
After three Detroit runners returned to the bases, Iglesias grounded out to shortstop to end the inning.
Kinsler hit his 14th homer off White Sox right-hander Jake Petricka, who replaced Giolito in the eighth.
Chicago added two runs in the eighth on a sacrifice fly by Smith and a run-scoring single by Sanchez.
NOTES: Tigers DH Victor Martinez was placed on the 10-day disabled list because of an irregular heartbeat. The same problem forced the 38-year-old to sit out for two weeks in June. There is no timetable for his return. Martinez is hitting .255 with 10 home runs and 47 RBIs in 107 games. ... White Sox OF Leury Garcia returned to the lineup after spending two days on the bench with back spasms. ... The Tigers recalled OF JaCoby Jones from Triple-A Toledo to take Martinez’s roster spot. He started in center field and went 1-for-3 with a walk. ... An MRI exam showed no major damage for White Sox OF Nicky Delmonico, who is on the disabled list with a right wrist sprain. Delmonico is eligible to return in early September. ... Tigers 3B/DH Nicholas Castellanos returned to the lineup after missing two games with a sprained left wrist.