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Rays 4, White Sox 0: Bats as cold as the air

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Three Tampa Bay pitchers combine for a five-hitter to send the Sox below .500 again

The highlight of the game.
The highlight of the game.
David Banks

One night after getting the biggest of big hits, the White Sox couldn't even find a more run-of-the-mill method to get a run across.

Three Tampa Bay Rays pitchers combined to throw a five-hitter. They didn't overpower the Sox, who struck out just twice all night, but they had trouble barreling it up, especially with runners in scoring position. The Sox went 0-for-7 in such opportunities, resulting in the second shutout all season.

Cesar Ramos, Brandon Gomes and Juan Carlos Oviedo combined to throw just 117 pitches over their nine innings. John Danks, on the other hand, threw 123 pitches and couldn't complete six. He labored from the first batter (a leadoff walk), and really had problems closing out innings.

He gave up a two-out, two-run double to Ryan Hanigan in the second inning, and an RBI single to James Loney in the third inning. On his final pitch of the night, he gave up an RBI triple to Desmond Jennings off the top of the fence in center. A leaping Adam Eaton got a lot of glove on it, but not the right part.

White Sox hitters could've used some of those two-out heroics, because they did set up some innings nicely. Gordon Beckham ended up on third in the third inning after a leadoff double and a productive groundout from Adrian Nieto. But Eaton hit a chopper back to the mound, and Marcus Semien lined out to Evan Longoria to keep the Sox off the board.

Two innings later, Alejandro De Aza drew a leadoff walk and moved to second on Beckham's single. Nieto (once again) moved them up 90 feet with a bunt, but Eaton (once again) grounded out back to the mound. Marcus Semien kept the inning alive with a walk to load the bases, but this time, Jose Abreu could only roll one over the left side for an inning-ending 5-3 putout.

Bullet points:

*Viciedo committed his second error of the season when a windblown fly to right kept drifting toward the infield, and he never got under it.

*Hector Noesi (1⅓ innings in his debut) and Scott Downs (two innings) provided nice relief, allowing a single apiece with zero walks. Downs might have done something to his thumb, though.

*Beckham's double and single were his first two hits of the season.

*Game time temperature was 39 degrees, although Hawk Harrelson said the stadium thermometer said 35 all game.

*Erik Johnson was optioned to Charlotte after the game to make room for Sunday starter Scott Carroll.

Record: 12-13 | Box score | Play-by-play | Highlights