HOUSTON -- Chris Sale was in for a long night on Friday and Jake Peavy totally understands.
Sale was outstanding as he finished with 14 strikeouts and no earned runs allowed, yet still took the loss as the White Sox fell to the Houston Astros 2-1 at Minute Maid Park.
With a fastball that touched 97 mph and sat at 95, and an equally effective slider, Sale thoroughly dominated an inexperienced Astros lineup. Yet when Sale looks at the box score he’ll find an ‘L’ next to his name as Houston rallied for two runs in the fifth inning.
Doesn’t matter that the ball didn’t leave the infield and the White Sox defense made several miscues.
“There’s not much he could have done differently,” Peavy said. “He was outstanding, you just get some bad breaks. I do know how that feels. As bad as he feels, there’s a bunch of other guys in here who had a part in that game who feel just as bad too. That’s what you’ve got to remember.”
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Peavy remembers plenty of tough times like this one, whether it was from his time with the San Diego Padres, whose offense was muted by playing in one of the pitcher friendliest parks in baseball, or last season when he rarely received run support and wound up with an 11-12 mark despite a 3.37 ERA.
He also knows how he and Sale share a hatred for losing. The two often say they don’t know how much they love winning, they just know they hate to lose. So even though the bulk of the blame lies on the White Sox defense, which committed its 43 rd and 44 th errors of the season, Peavy knows Sale will mostly blame himself for a loss in which he allowed six base runners and threw a career-high 124 pitches over eight outstanding innings.
“There’s not much you can say really,” Peavy said. “It just stinks. You wish you could have done more and you try to sit around tonight trying to think what you could have done differently. ... Just be a friend, let him talk it out and console him the best you can, but it’ll be a tough night for him.”