Chicago White Sox

White Sox win sixth straight, blank Blue Jays

White Sox win sixth straight, blank Blue Jays

A rare triple by Dioner Navarro gave the Chicago White Sox something even more uncommon: a series sweep in Toronto.

Navarro hit a go-ahead, two-run triple in the seventh inning, and the White Sox beat the Blue Jays 4-0 Wednesday night for their sixth straight win.

Chicago earned its first sweep in Toronto since May, 2005.

Jose Quintana (3-1) struck out a season-high 10 in six innings for Chicago, which at 16-6 is 10 games above .500 for the first time since Sept. 25, 2012.

"We've got a great team here and I think we've got a great shot at doing great things," Navarro said.

Quintana allowed five hits and walked three, improving to 4-0 with a 0.68 ERA in four starts at Toronto. He has won consecutive starts and lowered his ERA to 1.47, passing teammate Chris Sale for fourth-best in the AL.

"Every time he got in a tough spot, he got a little more on it," manager Robin Ventura said.

Navarro called Quintana's performance "unbelievable."

"He was throwing a lot of strikes," Navarro said. "He was getting ahead of hitters with all of his pitches, fastballs, breaking balls, everything."

Zach Duke, Nate Jones and David Robertson pitched an inning each, finishing Chicago's major league-leading fifth shutout.

Marco Estrada (1-2) gave up one hit through six innings but was knocked out in the seventh. Estrada allowed three runs and three hits in 6 2/3 innings and is winless in three starts.

Chicago's three-game sweep was the first by a visitor at Toronto since the Los Angeles Angels from Sept. 10-12, 2013. Shut out for the first time this season. Toronto has lost six of eight.

Todd Frazier singled to begin the seventh, and Melky Cabrera hit into a forceout. Brett Lawrie walked, Avisail Garcia struck out and Navarro got his fifth career triple, a drive off the wall in right-center.

"I knew in that situation I needed to make something happen," Navarro said. "I was fortunate enough to get a chanegup in the strike zone and put some good wood on it."

It was Navarro's first triple since Sept. 27, 2012.

"I filled up that zero," he said. "I always try to fill up a zero every year. I got the triple already. The next stat is a stolen base."

Estrada, who worked almost exclusively with Navarro when the two were teammates last season, gave his former catcher credit for hitting a good pitch.

"There's nothing else I could have done," Estrada said. "I put the ball exactly where I wanted."

Jesse Chavez relieved, and Austin Jackson tripled. During the next at bat, plate umpire John Tumpane ejected Blue Jays manager John Gibbons for arguing. It was the first ejection of the season for Gibbons, who came out and continued arguing with Tumpane and crew chief Dan Iassogna.

Estrada, who was seen rubbing his shoulder in the dugout between innings, acknowledged feeling some soreness.

"It didn't feel very good, but, you know, I don't want to talk about it," Estrada said.

Chris Volstad earns first MLB victory in five seasons as White Sox top Astros

Chris Volstad earns first MLB victory in five seasons as White Sox top Astros

HOUSTON -- Two weeks ago Chris Volstad was focused on Hurricane Irma prep when the White Sox called to invite him to the majors. On Thursday night, he earned his first major league victory in more than five years as the White Sox defeated the Houston Astros 3-1 at Minute Maid Park.

Volstad, who had only made 10 big league appearances the previous four-plus seasons and spent all of 2017 at Triple-A Charlotte, allowed a run in 4 1/3 innings to pick up his first win since Sept. 10, 2012.

He hadn’t just shut it down after the Triple-A season ended, Volstad was actually shuttering his Jupiter, Fla. home and business the day the short-handed White Sox called.

“I was probably a little mentally shut down,” Volstad said. “But yeah, it’s kind of crazy how things can change. I guess it’s been about two weeks now. At home getting ready for a hurricane and then getting called back up to the big leagues.”

Volstad received word he might pitch early in Thursday’s game when a blister on Carson Fulmer’s right index finger worsened. Fulmer felt some discomfort after his Friday start at Detroit.

The White Sox let Fulmer try to go but yanked him after 20 pitches, including two walks. That brought out Volstad, who along with Al Alburquerque was promoted Sept. 10 after the White Sox lost several pitchers to injury.

The White Sox actually had to track Volstad down two weeks ago as he’d already been home for a week. He spent part of the time prepping for Irma, including boarding up his brewery.

He escaped a first-inning jam with a double play ball of the bat of Carlos Correa and ended a threat in the second with a pickoff at second base of Alex Bregman. After he surrendered a solo homer to Brian McCann in the third, Volstad retired the final eight men he faced.

[MORE: Why the White Sox are optimistic about their middle infielders' potential

He was awarded his first victory since he defeated Thursday’s Astros starter Dallas Keuchel 1,836 days ago here. Volstad remembered the win because Houston was still in the National League and he had a base hit in the five-inning start for the Cubs. He went 3-12 for the Cubs that season.

“You’re able to lock it in pretty quickly and get focused at the big-league level, you have to,” Volstad said. “But being home in Triple-A for the last few years, just getting called up about 10 days ago, I’ve got people following it, but it’s kind of unknown I guess. It’s a little surprising, but I’m glad to be a part of a team for sure.”

Fulmer, Volstad, Jace Fry, Mike Pelfrey, Gregory Infante, Aaron Bummer, Danny Farquhar and Juan Minaya combined on a three-hitter for the White Sox. Tim Anderson extended his hit streak to 12 games with a ninth-inning solo homer, his 17th.

White Sox add two cross checkers to amateur scouting department

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White Sox add two cross checkers to amateur scouting department

The White Sox hired two new national amateur scouting cross checkers, Tim Bittner and Juan Alvarez.

Bittner was a one-time White Sox farmhand who was included in a package for Scott Schoeneweis in 2003 while Alvarez was an undrafted pitcher who pitched in 80 major league games for the Angels, Rangers and Marlins from 1999-2003.

Bittner previously worked as a Houston Astros area scout while Alvarez held the same role for the Cleveland Indians. They replace Joe Siers, who moved over to the team’s pro scouting staff, and Mike Ledna, who took a job with the New York Mets.

“Both are very smart guys with playing experience,” amateur scouting director Nick Hostetler said. “And they’re also coming from two clubs with a lot of recent success.

“I want to add as many smart, passionate, high-energy scouts to what I feel is a department already filled with scouts that check those boxes.”

The White Sox expect to have at least a top-four selection in the 2018 amateur draft. They headed into Thursday’s game with the second-worst record in the majors. Hostetler praised the 2018 draft class for its depth earlier this week.