CHICAGO – Jose Abreu had three singles and three RBIs to increase his major league-leading total to 89, and the White Sox had 17 hits in an 11-5 victory Friday over the Toronto Blue Jays at U.S. Cellular Field.
Adam Dunn, who also had three hits, and Dayan Viciedo each drove in two runs. Seven Sox starters had at least two hits and only one, Tyler Flowers, went hitless as the Sox had 14 singles and three doubles.
Melky Cabrera hit a two-run homer for the Blue Jays, who have lost four straight and 10 of 13 to drop four games behind Seattle in the AL wild-card race.
Hector Noesi (7-8) settled down after allowing four runs in the first two innings and pitched five-plus innings for his fourth win in five decisions. Javy Guerra, Maikel Cleto and Daniel Webb allowed one hit over the final four innings.
Marcus Stroman (7-4) gave up five runs, five hits and hit a batter while getting only two outs in his shortest outing since joining the Blue Jays’ rotation May 31.
Blue Jays slugger Edwin Encarnacion was hitless as the DH after being activated from the 15-day disabled list before the game.
Ten of the first 15 Sox batters reached base as they scored five runs in the first inning and added one in the second. Viciedo singled twice in the span and drove in two runs.
The Blue Jays scored a run in the first and three in the second against Noesi, including Cabrera’s two-run shot, to make it 6-4 after two innings.
The White Sox added five runs the fifth to put it away. They opened the inning with six straight singles — a season high for consecutive hits — a walk and wild pitch against Todd Redmond, Toronto’s second reliever.
Encarnacion, a two-time All-Star, missed more than a month because of a strained right quadriceps muscle. He has played 70 of 91 games this season at first base, but manager John Gibbons plans to ease Encarnacion back onto the field.
“He’ll have to play first base, but he was running guarded a little bit,” Gibbons said. “If we don’t have to, we’ll let him DH the first few games anyway.”
The Blue Jays sent outfielder Anthony Gose to the Triple-A Buffalo to make roster room for Encarnacion.
Outfielder Avisial Garcia, out since April 9 (torn labrum in left shoulder) has progressed in a rehab stint at Triple-A Charlotte and could be back as early as this weekend, according to manager Robin Ventura. Garcia has 17 hits in 50 at-bats (.340), the number of plate appearances Ventura said Garcia needed to reach.
Toronto LHP Mark Buehrle (11-8, 3.31) will face Chicago LHP John Danks (9-8, 4.96) on Saturday. Buehrle will take the mound at U.S. Cellular Field for the first time since leaving the White Sox three years ago.
Buehrle has made two starts in Toronto (1-1) against Chicago, where he pitched for the first 12 years of his career.