Peavy dominates as Sox crush Indians

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Peavy dominates as Sox crush Indians

CLEVELAND -- Jake Peavy coasted for six innings before giving up a run in the seventh and Adam Dunn homered, leading the Chicago White Sox to an easy 8-1 win over the AL Central-leading Cleveland Indians on Wednesday night and a split of their four-game series.Peavy (4-1) allowed seven hits, struck out five and had little difficulty with the Indians, who didn't get a runner past second until the seventh. The right-hander has been overpowering in his last five starts, posting a 1.36 ERA.Dunn connected for his 10th homer, a two-run shot, in the first inning off Jeanmar Gomez (2-2) and the White Sox added six runs in the fourth off Cleveland's starter, who was tagged for eight runs and nine hits - eight singles.Alexei Ramirez had three hits and Alejandro De Aza drove in two runs for the White Sox.After playing in seven straight games decided by two runs or fewer, the White Sox finally had an easy one.They were swept in a day-night doubleheader on Monday, but bounced back to take the final two games in the series. Chicago improved to 14-5 in its last 19 games at Progressive Field.Peavy was only in trouble once before the seventh.Travis Hafner led off Cleveland's second with a single, and one out later, Shin Soo-Choo singled. Michael Brantley followed by hitting a line drive up the middle that Peavy somehow caught against his stomach before throwing to first to force Choo for an inning-ending double play.Brantley just shook his head and laughed as he headed back to the dugout.Peavy made it look easy until his final inning, when the Indians finally strung together some quality at-bats.Dunn's homer was really all Peavy needed.After the start of the game was delayed for 64 minutes by rain that never arrived, Gomez walked De Aza leading off. One out later, Dunn drove a 1-0 pitch deep into the lower seats in right, the burly designated hitter's sixth homer in the last 11 games.Dunn would later strike out in his 36th consecutive game, which according research done by the Indians, is the longest streak since Bob Veale (1967-68).The White Sox added six runs in the fourth, torturing Gomez by going base to base with hard-hit singles and a pair of walks to open an 8-0 lead.A.J. Pierzynski, Ramirez and Eduardo Escobar each hit RBI singles before De Aza drove in two runs with a single to center. Gordon Beckham followed with a sinking liner to left that Johnny Damon snared with a diving catch for the second out, but Escobar alertly tagged and scored to cap the inning.As Gomez struggled, Indians manager Manny Acta elected not to get anyone up in his overworked bullpen.Peavy also allowed White Sox manager Robin Ventura to rest his relievers. Before the game, the club announced that new closer Chris Sale would undergo an MRI on his sore left elbow Thursday in Chicago. Sale was recently moved from the starting rotation into the closer's role because of tenderness in his elbow.Ventura insisted the move is precautionary at this point, but the team won't really know until it gets test results on the 23-year-old Sale.NOTES:
The Indians remain uncertain about RHP Roberto Hernandez's future. Formerly known as Fausto Carmona, Hernandez remains in the Dominican Republic, where he was arrested in January on identity fraud charges. Acta said Hernandez's representatives thought he would have rejoined the club by now, but he's been unable to get a work visa to return to the U.S. ... Acta rested 3B Jack Hannahan, who "tweaked" his left groin in Tuesday's game. Acta expects Hannahan, who is batting .291 with 16 RBIs in 26 games, will be available for Thursday's series opener in Boston. ... White Sox 3B Brent Morel was a late scratch from the starting lineup with a sore lower back. ... Since the start of the 2003, White Sox pitchers lead the majors with 815 quality starts.

White Sox pitchers headed for World Baseball Classic look sharp in win over Rockies

White Sox pitchers headed for World Baseball Classic look sharp in win over Rockies

GLENDALE, Ariz. -- Jose Quintana and Miguel Gonzalez looked like a pair of pitchers who began their offseasons earlier to prep for the World Baseball Classic.

Both White Sox starting pitchers looked sharp as they made their spring debuts in a 7-3 victory over the Colorado Rockies at Camelback Ranch on Sunday afternoon. Team USA relievers David Robertson and Nate Jones also pitched a scoreless inning each in the win. Prospect Zack Burdi also pitched a scoreless ninth inning.

Gonzalez, who is on the Team Mexico roster, only allowed a single on a dropped pop up on the infield in two scoreless innings.

“I’m a little ahead of the game right now,” Gonzalez said. “I started a little earlier this year in the offseason to work out, thinking I wanted to go to the WBC and get ready for that. But I think the most important thing right now is getting ready for April 1 with the White Sox. That’s my goal, and you don’t get these opportunities every year. To represent Mexico, it’s going to be fun. It’s going to be great.”

Quintana, who will start for Colombia in their March 10 opener against the United States, allowed a run and a hit in two innings. He struck out one and hit a batter.

“I feel good,” Quintana said. “I think for the first day I feel comfortable. I hit the glove. I feel good. A couple of pitches spinning were good and I feel really good.”

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Robertson is throwing much earlier than normal in anticipation of his March 6 departure for Miami, where Team USA begins its tournament. The club’s closer normally wouldn’t appear in a game until the calendar turns to March. Robertson said he usually only needs 5-6 spring outings to get in shape for the regular season. Though he felt a little rusty, the right-hander was pleased with several changeups and fastballs he threw.

“I wouldn’t say it was smooth but I got through it,” Robertson said. “I had a few bad pitches that were just not competitive. … All in all I got through what seemed like a tough inning for a first outing.

“I’m excited. I think it’s going to be a lot of fun. I’m going to go down there and put the ‘USA’ across my chest and have a chance to win something for our country. I think it’s going to be a lot of fun and I’m excited to play with a group of guys I’ve been playing against my whole life.”

Eddie Alvarez had a three-run double for the White Sox while Tyler Saladino collected two hits in three trips. Catcher Roberto Pena went 2-for-2 with an RBI. 

Jim Thome: Getting into baseball Hall of Fame would be indescribable

Jim Thome: Getting into baseball Hall of Fame would be indescribable

GLENDALE, Ariz. -- Normally upbeat and positive, Jim Thome can’t help but beam with pride when asked about his Hall of Fame candidacy.

Thome, who blasted 612 career home runs, including 134 with the White Sox, is eligible for induction for the first time in 2018. Even though he’s expected by many to one day be voted into Cooperstown, perhaps even in his first year, Thome said he’s merely honored to be on the ballot. Thome is joined on the ballot by Chipper Jones and former teammate Omar Vizquel, among others. Voting begins in December and the results will be announced next January.

“To even be on the ballot and thought of, it would be the greatest honor I think you could get,” Thome said. “Or if you get an opportunity to go into the greatest fraternity baseball has or created, it would be indescribable. How do you ever think as a kid or a high school player or even going through the minor leagues, that you’d play at the big leagues that long? And then to get an opportunity at the end of your career to be put on the ballot is so great.

“That would be the coolest moment ever.”

Thome – who is in White Sox camp as a special assistant to the general manager – provided plenty of big moments in a career that spanned 22 seasons. He hit 30 home runs in 12 of 13 seasons between 1996-2008, leading the league with 47 in 2003. The slugger was a five-time All-Star and produced 72.9 b-Wins Above Replacement.

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Thome isn’t as superstitious about his candidacy as others previously have been. He won’t be the guy to bring up the topic, but the Peoria, Ill.-native doesn’t shy away from discussing it, either.

“It’s not something you talk a lot about,” Thome said. “We’re not going to bring it up. But when people do bring it up, there’s a sense of pride, a sense of ‘Wow, baseball has thought that highly to put you on the ballot.’ And the fact that there’s just this wonderful fraternity of incredible players that you could be a part of, if you’re chosen.”