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White Sox 2, Dodgers 1: John Danks stays late after early scare

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Solo homers by Leury Garcia and Adam Dunn are enough for Sox to take series thanks to strong start

Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

Seven pitches into this game, John Danks required a visit to the mound from Herm Schneider.

After that unwelcome scene, Danks threw 100 more pitches, keeping the Dodgers down into the eighth inning. A one-out "double" by his last batter came around to score and spoiled the shutout bid, but Danks wasn't denied the victory this time. He improved to 4-5 on the season, helping the White Sox take the three-game series at Chavez Ravine and climb over .500 once again.

An injury-altered Dodgers lineup had trouble squaring up Danks' stuff, which was softer-than-usual on the Los Angeles broadcast's gun. He allowed just two hits -- both to Dee Gordon, and both weak. The first was a first-inning bunt single, and the second was a half-swing one-hopper that an awkwardly sliding Leury Garcia deflected into foul territory. It should've been an error, but scorers called it a double. Gordon stole third and scored on a fielder's choice, but Zach Putnam didn't allow the tying run to get into scoring position, and Ronald Belisario pitched his second 1-2-3 save in as many nights.

Maybe Danks' control was just erratic enough to keep the Dodgers on edge. Though he allowed just two hits, seven Dodgers reached (three walks, two HBPs). Then again, two of them were thrown out on the basepaths. Tyler Flowers thwarted Gordon's steal attempt in the first inning thanks to Gordon Beckham's foot, and Adrian Gonzalez was caught dancing off third after a rundown between first and second got out of control. He was initially ruled safe to keep the inning alive, but a review showed Garcia tagging Gonzalez as his body parts surrounded the bag without touching it, resulting in a rare 4-3-6-5 double play.

The game had a few other weird wrinkles. For instance, Danks made two runs of support stand up, both coming on solo homers. One was by Adam Dunn, which is normal. The other was by Leury Garcia, which isn't. He jumped on Josh Beckett's first pitch of the third inning and sent it over the wall in center for his first big-league home run.

Otherwise, the Sox offense gave Beckett a harder time than the Dodgers gave Danks, but they couldn't turn anything else into runs. They went 0-for-7 with runners in scoring position, and Drew Butera went 2-for-3 in gunning down baserunners.

One potential scoring opportunity was interrupted by home plate umpire Kerwin Danley's absentmindedness. The Sox had runners on the corners and one out when Adam Dunn took first base on a pitch out of the zone. Danley had no problem with it, but he should have, because it was a 2-2 count. Jose Abreu moved up to second on the play, and after a too-lengthy review, the count was restored, and Dunn returned to the plate. Abreu came back to first, and Robin Ventura didn't care for that one bit. After the layoff, Dunn swung and missed on a curve to strike out, and Alexei Ramirez grounded out to end the inning.

Ventura's frustration with Danley may have carried over to the eighth inning. When Putnam didn't get a good-looking splitter on a 3-2 count to Yasiel Puig, he let Danley hear it from the dugout, and Danley didn't take long in ejecting him. It was the second ejection of the season, but Putnam and Belisario made it easy on Mark Parent from that point on.

Bullet points:

*Flowers caught Danks for the first time this season, and Danks didn't skip a beat. Which was good, because Flowers struck out all four times at bat.

*Beckham committed his third error in as many games when he bobbled Adrian Gonzalez's grounder three times. If he were Ramirez, you'd be hearing about his lack of focus right now. But he's not Ramirez, so you don't.

*Danks was credited with an infield single when Gordon stopped his grounder, but rushed the throw to first. He's the first White Sox pitcher to collect a hit since Dylan Axelrod in Washington on April 11, 2013.

Record: 31-30 | Box score | Play-by-play | Highlights