CLEVELAND – Other than Jose Abreu’s snazzy glove toss, Saturday night was a lost cause for the White Sox.
The highest-scoring team in the AL was held to five hits and committed two costly errors in a 2-0 loss to the Cleveland Indians, sending the Sox to their fourth straight defeat.
Abreu, who leads the majors in homers and RBIs, struck out with two runners on to end the eighth. Earlier, the Cuban first baseman made the play of the day. Abreu fielded Lonnie Chisenhall’s grounder in the sixth and, unable to get the ball out of his mitt, flipped the glove about 10 feet to pitcher Scott Carroll covering the bag for the out.
The moment provided some levity for the Sox on a difficult night.
“I didn’t know that it got stuck in his glove at first and then when he tossed his glove, I kind of just laughed in my head and just made sure I wanted to corral it and make sure I got the glove for the out,” Carroll said. “Never had that happen.”
White Sox manager Robin Ventura saw it himself during his playing days.
“I saw El Duque (Orlando Hernandez) do it when I was at third base one time,” Ventura said. “It works and they called him out.”
Unfortunately, Carroll’s other teammates didn’t make enough good plays in his second major league start. The errors made both of the runs he allowed in six innings unearned.
“We didn’t help Scotty out, he pitched great,” Ventura said. “You see this kid go out there and pitch the way he has, it’s impressive. For us, we just didn’t help him at all defensively.”
The 29-year-old Carroll (1-1) scattered five hits, walked one and lowered his ERA to 0.68.
“I knew it was a validation start for me,” Carroll said. “It’s just something I needed to prove myself again. Obviously I don’t know how long I’m going to be up here but I’m going to continue to show what I’m capable of doing.”
In his first career start on April 27 against Tampa Bay, Carroll pitched 7 1-3 innings, giving up only two runs.
“He knows how to pitch,” Ventura said. “Sometimes guys don’t throw 95 (mph), but somehow it just seems to jump on them. He’s done great. It’s been impressive to see him come in here and take a shot at it, grab a hold of it.”
The first unearned run came in the second when third baseman Marcus Semien dropped David Murphy;s popup with two outs. He drifted under the ball near the mound, but it fell out of his glove and Chisenhall, who started the inning with a double, scored from third.
In the fifth, Jose Ramirez led off with a bunt single and then advanced to second on a throwing error by catcher Tyler Flowers. Mike Aviles sacrificed Ramirez to third and Nick Swisher brought him home with a sacrifice fly.
Justin Masterson (1-1) pitched 7 1-3 scoreless innings.
“It’s a tough lineup, that’s why they score a lot of runs. There aren’t too many soft spots,” Masterson said.
The White Sox’s best chance against Masterson came when they loaded the bases with one out in the fifth. Dayan Viciedo reached on Chisenhall’s throwing error at third base, Jordan Danks walked and Flowers was hit by a pitch.
Semien lined a ball to Swisher, who caught it and touched first base for the unassisted double play.
In the eighth, the White Sox had runners at second and third with two outs and Abreu at the plate, but Cody Allen got him to strike out on three pitches.
John Axford pitched the ninth for his ninth save.
Chicago’s Alexei Ramirez, the leading hitter in the AL, was hitless in four at-bats.
NOTES: White Sox OF Adam Eaton (strained right hamstring) was placed on the 15-day DL. Jordan Danks started in center and is expected to get the majority of playing time while Eaton is out. ... Chicago LHP Chris Sale (strained flexor muscle) played catch Saturday and could throw again on Monday. ... After the game, the White Sox optioned LHP Frank De Los Santos, who had been called up Saturday, back to Triple-A Charlotte with a corresponding move to be made Sunday.