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Tigers 8, White Sox 1: Flat effort at wrong time

John Danks.
John Danks.

Coming off one of the best starts of his career, John Danks needed a strong encore in order to give the White Sox a chance against Justin Verlander.

Instead, he found himself down 3-0 after the first thanks to a pair of singles and a Miguel Cabrera stolen base, of all things. On the bright side, that means he's only half as bad as Jake Peavy from the game before.

The game seemed to turn on a deep drive to center by Delmon Young that went off the tip of Alejandro De Aza's glove in front of the 420' sign in center. Had De Aza come up with it -- and he probably should have, even though he ran a long way to get there -- the game would've been scoreless with two outs and a runner on third. Instead, the Tigers led 1-0, and they'd tack on two more

Making up that deficit against Verlander was a tall task, and it then became impossible when Detroit tacked on five more runs in the fifth -- two on an Austin Jackson homer, and a bases-loaded Jhonny Peralta double on a rolling 3-2 Josh Kinney slider. All runs were charged to Danks, who finished with a game score of 16.

The offense wasn't nonexistent against Verlander -- the Sox put the leadoff runner on in each of the second, third and fourth innings. They just couldn't sustain an attack, and even when they did, it didn't amount to much. Tyler Flowers hit a massive homer to left-center on a first-pitch fastball by Verlander to start the eighth. They added a double and two singles in the inning ... and still only scored once. The two singles were of the infield variety.

One of them was by Eduardo Escobar, who finished the game with a career batting average of 1.000. A friendly call by Jeff Kellogg helped him out. Escobar hit a grounder to first, and Verlander didn't find the bag on his first attempt to tag it upon catching the toss. He did tag it while feeling around for it after, just before Escobar's foot hit the bag, but Kellogg didn't see it that way.

Also making his major-league debut: Shane Lindsay, who provided the full Shane Lindsay Experience in his inning of work -- a walk, a strikeout, and two pop-outs.

The loss puts the White Sox 6 1/2 games out of first, making Saturday's game a must-win.

Record: 68-67 | Box score | Play-by-play