White Sox use big eighth to top Cardinals

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White Sox use big eighth to top Cardinals

ST. LOUIS -- A.J. Pierzynski hit a two-run homer, rookie left-hander Jose Quintana allowed one run over 5 1-3 innings and the streaking Chicago White Sox beat the St. Louis Cardinals 6-1 Tuesday night.Paul Konerko had three singles on a 3-for-4 night to lift his majors-best average to .373, Adam Dunn added a solo homer - his 21st - and Orlando Hudson hit a two-run triple for Chicago.Quintana (2-1), making his fifth start, allowed a career-high 10 hits but did not issue a walk and was helped out by three double plays.Chicago has won eight straight road games and is a major league-best 17-6 since May 17.The Cardinals are moving in the opposite direction, dropping three of their last four to fall back to .500 (31-31).Matt Holliday went 2 for 4 with a run scored for St. Louis. Allen Craig drove in the Cardinals' run with an RBI single in the sixth.St. Louis starter Adam Wainwright (5-7) lasted seven innings and allowed half the amount of hits as Quintana. He gave up two runs while striking out seven and walking two.Konerko ignited the only rally off Wainwright with a leadoff single to start the second inning. He was erased by Alex Rios' fielder's choice, but Pierzynski kept the line moving with a single to center. Hudson then plated Rios and Pierzynski with a two-out triple to right center that glanced off right fielder Carlos Beltran's glove.The White Sox blew it open with four runs in the eighth off relievers Marc Rzepczynski and Mitchell Boggs. Rzepczynski gave up an RBI single to Gordon Beckham, who was thrown out trying to advance to second, and Dunn's 436-foot bomb over the Cardinals' bullpen in right field to make it 4-1. Boggs relieved Rzepczynski and gave up a single to Konerko and a 408-foot line shot into the stands in right by Pierzynski.NOTES:
The matchup of St. Louis skipper Mike Matheny and Chicago's Robin Ventura marked the first meeting of rookie managers in a Cardinals game since interim manager Mike Jorgensen and first-year San Diego skipper Bruce Bochy squared off in 1995. ... Prior to his triple, Hudson was hitting just .182 (10 for 55) since joining the White Sox on May 22. ... Holliday returned to the lineup after sitting out two games with back spasms. ... Dunn also fanned twice, giving him a major league-leading 98 strikeouts. ... The Cardinals' Rafael Furcal is hitless on the current homestand (0-for-15).

Mark Buehrle 'floored' White Sox will retire his number

Mark Buehrle 'floored' White Sox will retire his number

GLENDALE, Ariz. — He's a little nervous now that he has a speech to make, but Mark Buehrle is enjoying life and has no regrets about retiring from baseball.

Addressing the media for the first time since his final game on Oct. 4, 2015, Buehrle said Friday he's right where he wants to be — at home with his family. Buehrle determined 3-4 years ago he would retire after his contract expired to spend more time with his wife and kids. The pitcher, who will have his number 56 retired by the White Sox on June 24, said he didn't announce his decision to step away because he hoped to do so with much fanfare.

"I knew I was done, that I didn't have the drive any more," Buehrle said on a conference call. "I think a big part of it was missing the family, they weren't up in Toronto the whole season and I think that just kind of drained on me. The reason I didn't say anything — I didn't want all the attention. I've always told people I was a young guy that came into the big leagues unknown. Kind of snuck into the big leagues and I wanted to kind of sneak my way out. That's why I haven't said anything, I haven't talked to anybody, I just kind of let it go. Hopefully one day it was just kind of got forgotten and five years down the road, ‘Where's that Buehrle guy? Is he still around?'"

Buehrle, who won 161 games and completed 200 innings in 11 straight seasons with the White Sox, has spent the past year-plus on his Missouri farm with his wife, Jamie, and two children, "doing what I've been wanting to do for 20 years," he said. 

While he misses teammates and life in the clubhouse, Buehrle is at peace with his decision to retire after 16 seasons. He discovered when watching games last season that he didn't miss playing as much as he expected.

Buehrle joked that he doesn't want many former teammates to attend the ceremony because it means he'd have to speak in front of a larger audience. He promises to keep his speech brief, similar to the way he pitched. The left-hander even joked that he offered to allow his son to make the speech in his stead.

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Even though he's one of the most popular players in club history, Buehrle was surprised last month when the White Sox informed him of their plans. He'll be the 12th player to have his number retired by the White Sox.

"I was blown away and floored by it," Buehrle said. "It's obviously a great honor. It's something you don't really intend to happen or you don't play for that reason. You just go out there and play. I had a long, successful career there in Chicago. I just tried to do everything right and that's how I was kind of raised and how I went about it. Jerry (Reinsdorf) is kind enough to come with this offer about retiring my jersey. I really don't know.

"I've been joking around with friends saying my jersey is going to be up there next to Frank Thomas. I grew up watching this guy. It doesn't seem right. It doesn't seem like it belongs up there next to his.

"I'm going to be up there with all those numbers and it doesn't seem right, like that's where I belong. I just did what I was supposed to do, had fun with it and lived every day like it was my last. Now my number is going to be up there. I haven't really soaked everything in. It just doesn't make sense right now."

Carson Fulmer to start for White Sox in exhibition opener

Carson Fulmer to start for White Sox in exhibition opener

GLENDALE, Ariz. — The White Sox have lined up their first three starting pitchers of the spring starting with Carson Fulmer on Saturday afternoon.

The team's 2015 first-round draft pick received the nod as the White Sox open their exhibition schedule against the Los Angeles Dodgers on Saturday at 2:05 p.m. CST. 

Jose Quintana pitches Sunday at home against the Colorado Rockies while Lucas Giolito is set to start at the Cubs on Monday. Fulmer — who went 0-2 with an 8.49 ERA in 11 2/3 innings in 2016 — likened the start to pitching against the Dodgers in a night game last spring in front of a sellout crowd at Camelback Ranch.

"I'm definitely honored," Fulmer said. "It's great. I feel like the coaching staff here stresses that in order to be a good player, you have to put yourself in situations that you are uncomfortable with. I'm not saying I'm uncomfortable with it but it was definitely a unique situation where I can go out there and help us win. So, spring training and the season, our goal is to win and I feel like with the coaching staff putting us young guys in that situation, I think it's going to benefit us."

[RELATED: White Sox not overly concerned about Todd Frazier's injury]

Fulmer is also excited to face his counterpart Saturday, Dodgers pitcher Clayton Kershaw. 

"That's awesome," Fulmer said. "I've been watching him pitch since I was a little kid. I'm definitely pumped to see him out there. It's going to be awesome. 

"He's one of the best pitchers in baseball. I mean, he's a pitcher that you look up to and for me, it's going to be awesome. I hopefully can keep the scorecard or something."

The White Sox also announced Friday they have signed 25 players to one-year contracts, including Fulmer. Carlos Rodon's one-year deal for $600,000 is the highest of the bunch.