CLEVELAND (AP) Shelley Duncan's RBI double in the eighth inning gave the Cleveland Indians a soggy 3-2 win over the Chicago White Sox on Monday night and a sweep of their day-night doubleheader.Duncan ripped a pitch from left-hander Matt Thornton (1-2) into the left-field corner, scoring Asdrubal Cabrera.The first-place Indians won the opener 8-6.The White Sox have lost six of seven.Cleveland's Josh Tomlin allowed five hits in 7-1 3 innings - most of the final three in a steady downpour. He struck out a career-high eight, allowed two walks and maintained his control despite slick, slippery conditions on the mound.Joe Smith (2-1) gave up a game-tying single after a lengthy rain delay, but got two outs and was credited with the win after Duncan's single.Tony Sipp worked the ninth for his first save.The Indians are 8-3 in their past 11.Sipp gave up a two-out walk to pinch-hitter Paul Konerko before striking out Tyler Flowers for his second career save - first since July 23, 2010.Cleveland's Travis Hafner homered and tripled in the opener. He struck out twice in the second game but was hit by a pitch for the 79th time in his career, tying him with Nap Lajoie for the team record.Cabrera opened the eighth with a bloop single off Thornton, and Carlos Santana followed with a flair to almost the exact spot in shallow right-center. After Hafner popped out, Duncan pulled Thornton's pitch down the line to make it 3-2 and give the few hundred fans who stuck around after a lengthy rain delay something to cheer.The White Sox tied it 2-all in the eighth, moments after a 1-hour, 25-minute rain delay, on Alex Rios' RBI single.With the sky darkening and radar showing heavy rain approaching, the Indians scored twice in the fifth to take a 2-1 lead and put Tomlin in position for the win.Tomlin retired the White Sox in order in the sixth and seventh before running into trouble in the eighth as the rain intensified. With one out, he walked Alejandro De Aza and gave up a single to Gordon Beckham before manager Manny Acta decided to pull his right-hander and bring in reliever Dan Wheeler.But as Wheeler neared the mound, crew chief Larry Vanover ordered the groundscrew to cover the infield at 9:09 p.m. The rain delay lasted 85 minutes, and when play resumed, Acta put in side-armer Smith to face Rios, who promptly hit an RBI single to tie it 2-2.The Indians hit some solid line drives off Chicago starter Eric Stults in the first three innings, but had nothing to show for it.They had a scoring chance in the fourth after Stults issued consecutive one-out walks. But he recovered by striking out Hafner and getting Duncan to pop out.Stults wasn't so lucky in the fifth, when a two-out walk to catcher Lou Marson, Cleveland's No. 9 hitter batting just .059, came back to haunt him.Marson then got a great jump and stole second on the next pitch before scoring on Michael Brantley's single. Brantley took second on the throw home and scored on Jason Kipnis' RBI single.The White Sox took a 1-0 lead in the fifth on Brent Morel's RBI groundout.Stults' debut with the White Sox was also his first major league start since Aug. 9, 2009, when he pitched for the Los Angeles Dodgers. He spent 2010 pitching in Japan and made six relief appearances for Colorado last season before signing with Chicago as a free agent.The left-hander was recalled before the game from Triple-A Charlotte, where he went 1-1 with a 3.20 ERA in five starts.NOTES: Per the new collective bargaining agreement, teams are allowed to carry 26 players on their roster for unique doubleheaders. ... The day-night twinbill drew just 19,679 total fans. Despite being in first place, the Indians have the lowest average attendance in the majors. ... Tomlin has given up only 47 walks in 273 career innings. ... Hafner's triple in the opener for Cleveland was his first since 2007, prompting a few good-natured jokes about his blazing speed. "I'd say I could beat 75 to 80 percent of the guys on the team in a race, if it came down to it," he quipped.
Lucas Giolito got the “click” he was looking for on Thursday night and it resulted in a seven-inning no-hitter for Triple-A Charlotte.
Currently the No. 2-rated White Sox prospect, Giolito has struggled so far this season at Charlotte. He’s 2-5 with a 5.44 ERA in nine starts in 46 1/3 innings.
While he’s struck out 43 hitters, Giolito has also walked 25. But it all came together for the tall right-hander on Thursday when he threw an 87-pitch no-no against the Syracuse Chiefs.
“It was special,” Giolito said on a conference call on Friday. “Just the way the year has gone, it didn't start the way I wanted it to, the numbers haven't been great. So it's great to have a no-hitter under my belt, my first professional one. Just take that and work from there. I'm just going to keep working on the things I've been working on the past few weeks and hopefully string a few good ones together.”
Rated the No. 3 overall prospect in the majors before the 2016 season, Giolito’s profile has slipped some because of performance. The top name included from the Washington Nationals in the Adam Eaton deal, Giolito has struggled with command of his offspeed pitches and fastball at times. Earlier this month, Giolito described his performance as “atrocious,” while remaining optimistic that his fortunes could change just like clicking on a light switch.
Giolito said he felt confident on the mound Thursday and it translated.
“I did a lot better job of keeping the fastball down in the zone to both sides of the plate,” Giolito said. “I was able to get the ball inside to lefties pretty well, maybe got a few jam shots some pop outs here and there and then I had my two-seamer working as well. It was just a pretty solid day as far as throwing the fastball.”
Pleased as he is, Giolito is striving to be better. He pointed at his three walks as an area he’d like to improve upon. But he’s also happy with how it all worked on Thursday.
“There's always still work to do,” Giolito said. “I walked three batters and that is not something I want to be doing. The walk numbers are a little too high for my liking. There's still plenty to work on, but everything felt pretty solid last night. I felt like I repeated my delivery well, I executed more pitches. Especially when I'd fall behind in the count I'd execute quality pitches and you can get yourself out of bad situations doing that.”
The Knights made two roster moves on Friday -- Yoan Moncada was activated off the seven-day disabled list and Ryan Raburn was traded to the Washington Nationals for cash or a player to be named later.
Dylan Covey is already the sixth White Sox pitcher to be placed on the 10-day disabled list this season. The club announced Friday that Covey is headed to the DL just as one of the pitchers already there, James Shields, took another step forward in his rehab.
Shields threw his second bullpen in three days on Friday and hopes to begin a minor-league rehab assignment after he throws a three-inning, game-situation-like bullpen on Monday.
The White Sox promoted reliever Juan Minaya to take Covey’s spot on the 25-man roster. They also announced Tyler Danish would be the 26th man for Saturday’s doubleheader and manager Rick Renteria said Covey’s scheduled start Monday would be filled internally. Reliever David Holmberg could make the start.
“I’m full bore,” Shields said. “Everything is working really well and everything feels good. Ready to rock and roll.
“It’s been pretty tough for me. I’m pretty anxious. I want to be out there and help my team win. But at the end of the day I have to stick to the process. You know the team was really doing good up until this last road trip. Now we need to pick it back up. I’m looking forward to coming back and helping the squad out.”
Covey isn’t surprised he landed on the DL.
He missed much of the 2016 season with a left oblique strain and knew exactly what he was experiencing when he felt the tug on Tuesday. But Covey remembers the early portion of last year’s injury and thinks he’s in better shape now.
“Well, my first thought was, ‘Oh, no. I did it again,’” Covey said. “It’s kind of looking like it might not be nearly as bad as it was last year. So I’m staying optimistic and taking it day by day.”
“I think if I tried to push it another pitch like I did last year, it could have maybe worsened the situation. So I’m glad I was able to hold back a little bit.”
Minaya -- who pitched in 11 games for the 2016 White Sox -- missed roughly five weeks with an abdominal tear. Though he wanted to race back (he struck out nine in 5 2/3 innings this spring), Minaya knew he had to be practical about his rehab. Once healthy, Minaya pitched well at Triple-A Charlotte, where he posted a 1.23 ERA in 14 2/3 innings.
“I took a little while but we’re going through the process and we have to be patient and do everything they say to get healthy,” Minaya said. “We have to do the right thing to be healthy.”
“I feel very happy with myself because I’m working to get back here and I see the progress and I feel very happy.”
Minaya gives the White Sox nine relievers on their 13-man staff. That amount would make it much easier for the team to fill Covey’s first turn in the rotation with a bullpen game on Monday. A career starter who only began to pitch in relief this season, Holmberg could give the White Sox several innings to start. While Renteria won’t name any candidates for the series opener against the Boston Red Sox, he did suggest it would be an internal candidate.
“We’ll probably end up filling with one of our own guys,” Renteria said.