CHICAGO – Mark Buehrle earned his first win in six weeks and then reflected on his 10th straight season with 200 innings pitched for the Chicago White Sox.
“Obviously the record is not what you want it to be at the end of the year,” Buehrle (13-13) said Saturday night after ending the Cleveland Indians’ seven-game winning streak with a 6-2 win in a game shortened to six innings by rain.
“Like I’ve always said, wins and losses are kind of out of your control. You go out there and eat up innings. My main goal in spring training is to get 200 innings,” he added.
“If you get 200, you are going deep into the games and giving your team a chance to win.”
Buehrle, who has pitched 2,220 innings since the beginning of the 2001 season and has a no-hitter and a perfect game during that span, finished 2010 with 210 1/3 innings. His ERA this season was 4.28.
“Overall the ERA is a little higher than I wanted,” Buehrle said. “It’s not the best season, but I hung in there and gave us a chance.”
Buehrle allowed six hits in his 27th career complete game and third this season. The left-hander, who was 0-4 in his previous seven starts, won for the first time since Aug. 19.
“He just does what he always does,” said Cleveland’s Jayson Nix, a former teammate of Buehrle’s with the White Sox. “He throws strikes, changes speeds and makes the ball move. Any time you do that – and he probably does it every time he throws – it keeps guys off balance.”
Alejandro De Aza hit a two-out RBI double in the fourth to put Chicago ahead 3-2 and Brent Lillibridge – in a 7-for-62 funk – followed with a two-run single off Carlos Carrasco (2-2).
Viciedo hit his fifth homer of the season to lead off the bottom of the sixth, a line drive through the rain that began to pick up in intensity an inning earlier on a 47-degree night. Before the Indians could bat in the top of the seventh, umpires waved the teams off and the game was declared official after a delay of 1 hour, 3 minutes.
The White Sox scored single runs in the first and second innings without a hit. Juan Pierre stole home on a double steal with Omar Vizquel in the opening inning and Tyler Flowers scored on a wild pitch by Carrasco in the second.
But Buehrle gave up three straight singles in the third before balking home Michael Brantley as the Indians tied it
Carrasco gave up five hits, striking out nine in his six innings to get his first complete game.
“He (Carrasco) will go into the spring with a very good chance of being in our rotation,” Indians manager Manny Acta said.
“We feel like we’ve made some progress this year despite having a very young ballclub.”
The Indians lead the 2010 series 9-8, although the White Sox have won 5 of the last 6. Chicago is only 31-40 against the AL Central this season and has a winning record only against Kansas City.
• Paul Konerko, who needs one homer for 40, was the DH in what could have been one of his final games with the White Sox. He’ll be a free agent after the season.
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