Chris Sale only struck out six Blue Jays tonight, meaning that he'll share ownership of the longest streak of 10-strikeout starts with Pedro Martinez, instead of owning it for himself.
Otherwise, tonight lived up to the billing.
Chris Sale vs. Mark Buehrle. Dual complete games. One hour, 54 minutes.
And, somewhat surprisingly, a White Sox winner. It's somewhat surprising because the Sox pulled off the comeback without putting an earned run on Buehrle's tab.
Buehrle had it under control through seven, and he started the eighth by getting Gordon Beckham to hit a routine grounder to short. Jose Reyes pulled a Bill Buckner, though, and that came back to haunt Toronto.
After Jose Bautista made a sensational sliding catch by the side wall in right for the first out and Carlos Sanchez lined out, Adam Eaton bounced a single through the middle to put runners on the corners for Jose Abreu.
Remember how the Blue Jays beat the White Sox twice because they batted a power hitter second? Well, here's Robin Ventura giving it back to the Jays. Abreu didn't slug one out, but he swung at the first pitch and dropped a single to center to tie the game at 2.
That extended the inning to Melky Cabrera, who entered the game 17-for-30 against Buehrle in his career. Well, he's now 19-for-34 after today's game, and after he shot a double past Josh Donaldson down the line. Eaton scored, and so did Jose Abreu, sliding under Russell Martin's tag to give the Sox a 4-2 lead
The Condor came back to the mound on 97 pitches and facing the heart of the Blue Jays' order. While we'd ordinarily note TTOP and everything else, the narrative called for Sale to go the distance, and that he did. He gave up an infield single to Donaldson, struck out Bautista (98 mph fastball on the inside corner!), and, after an Edwin Encarnacion single brought the go-ahead run to the plate, induced a game-ending double play off the bat of Danny Valencia on his 108th pitch for the complete game-victory.
Sale didn't strike out 10, but he was damn good, allowing just six hits and zero walks. The Blue Jays were aggressive on his fastball early in counts, but Sale didn't have his best high-fastball game working for him. He gave up a pair of solo homers, and the second one on Donaldson was on a fastball that was about 6 inches too low.
Through seven innings, the Sox were able to erase the first solo homer, but again, they needed help from the Toronto defense. Cabrera singled with one out, then moved to third on a bloop single by Avisail Garcia. Bautista saw Garcia round the base aggressively, and he tried throwing to first and catching him off the bag. The throw bounced, though, and Chris Colabello couldn't handle the hop. The ball squirted away, and Cabrera came home for run (and unearned run) No. 1.