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Indians 10, White Sox 1: Defense accelerates Mike Pelfrey’s unraveling

This one could have been uglier

Chicago White Sox v Cleveland Indians Photo by Ron Schwane/Getty Images

If the White Sox saved their exciting games for an appreciative home crowd and stink it up in Cleveland to close it out ... oh well.

A Mike Pelfrey-Trevor Bauer matchup went as well as you’d think it might, but not for the reasons you might expect. Bauer did his thing, holding the White Sox to a Yolmer Sanchez solo homer and three others hits over seven innings.

Pelfrey did his thing, but a defense meltdown caused the game to snowball on him. He walked the leadoff man in the second, and it came around to score on an Austin Jackson single, so Pelfrey trailed on his own merit. However, Nicky Delmonico whiffed on a deep-but-catchable drive for two runs, and Tim Anderson let a grounder to his right skip through his wickets for another run. That put three more runs on Pelfrey’s tab, and then Jay Bruce added two more by clobbering just left of center, which put the game out of reach.

Pelfrey had more problems in the third, allowing a pair of doubles to start the inning, then walking a pair of batters with two outs. In came David Holmberg, who promptly gave up a bases-clearing double to Edwin Encarnacion to make it a 10-0 game.

Sanchez broke up Bauer’s perfect game bid by spinning on a 3-1 fastball and sending it out to right, which at least spoiled the shutout. And while Holmberg allowed all three inherited runners to score, he, Chris Beck and Jace Fry didn’t allow any of their own runs over the final 5 13 innings.

And hey, the game didn’t last three hours, even with a completely unnecessary pitching change by Terry Francona in the ninth.

Bullet points:

*Pelfrey’s final line: 2 23 IP, 6 H, 10 R, 7 ER, 6 BB, 2 K, 1 HR.

*Pelfrey’s final record: 3-12, 5.93 ERA.

*Jose Abreu had one of his worst games in a while, going 0-for-4 with three strikeouts. It lowered his average to .304, so he may sit strategically over the last two games to protect it.

*Yoan Moncada had half the White Sox’ hits on a 2-for-4 night, and Avisail Garcia lined a single to Bauer after a war of words with him the last time they met.

Record: 66-94 | Box score