- Associated Press - Monday, July 6, 2015

CHICAGO (AP) - Wins haven’t come as easily as strikeouts for Chris Sale this season. That’s why the left-hander had no regrets about losing his bid to break a strikeout streak record in one of the Chicago White Sox’s more rousing wins.

Sale pitched a six-hitter that led the White Sox past the Toronto Blue Jays 4-2 Monday night in the fastest major league game in almost four years.

Sale (7-4) had struck out at least 10 batters in eight straight starts, matching the major league mark set by Pedro Martinez in 1999.

Sale fanned six in a complete game, outpitching former mentor Mark Buehrle (9-5), who also went the distance.

“I’ll take this outcome over that any day,” Sale said. “I mean, it’s one of those things, it’s cool, it’s fine. But we won the game, and I’m not gonna pout at all.”

There were no walks in a game that took only 1 hour, 54 minutes. It was the speediest big league game since Tampa Bay and Kansas City took 1:53 on Aug. 9, 2011, according to STATS.

“It was fantastic. Both of them were fantastic,” Blue Jays manager John Gibbons said. “It was a great ballgame. Got away there at the end.”

All of Chicago’s runs were unearned. An error by shortstop Jose Reyes leading off the eighth helped the White Sox score three times and overcome a 2-1 deficit.

“I need to make that play,” Reyes said. “The ball didn’t do anything. It was right to me. That have to be out right there. That’s why we lost the game.”

Josh Donaldson and Chris Colabello hit solo home runs for Toronto.

Sale began the game pitching more like Buehrle, getting five outs on grounders in the first two innings. In fact, Sale allowed a homer - a solo shot to Colabello leading off the third inning - before recording his first strikeout when he got Devon Travis looking for the second out in the third.

The Blue Jays, the top-scoring team in the majors, were aggressive at the plate and didn’t work many deep counts, opting to put the ball in play before getting two strikes.

Chicago tied the score at 1 in the fourth inning with an assist from the Toronto defense. Melky Cabrera singled with one out and advanced to third base when Avisail Garcia followed with another single.

Right fielder Jose Bautista decided to throw to first base behind Garcia, who didn’t take a particularly wide turn around the bag. The ball bounced away from Colabello at first base and rolled far enough away to allow Cabrera to score on Bautista’s first error of the season.

Donaldson hit his 20th homer in the sixth.

Buehrle had retired nine straight batters before Reyes committed the error on Gordon Beckham’s routine grounder to start the eighth.

Buehrle retired the next two batters, but then the White Sox put together three straight hits. Jose Abreu tied it with an RBI single and Cabrera followed with a two-run double.

“It was good for the lineup to do that and pick him up,” Chicago manager Robin Ventura said, “because he’s done his work before and not gotten much out of it.”


Blue Jays: RHP Roberto Osuna, who felt discomfort on the lower right side of his back on Sunday against Detroit, reported no lingering problem on Monday.

White Sox: RHP Nate Jones (Tommy John surgery) threw a simulated game at U.S. Cellular Field and likely will begin a rehab assignment this week. “Nate looked great,” Ventura said. “Velocity-wise, he could probably go pitch now.”


The second of the four-game series is Tuesday night. LHP Felix Doubront (0-0, 3.86 ERA) will make his first start (and second appearance) for the Blue Jays this season. The White Sox counter with LHP Jose Quintana (4-7, 3.81), who has made seven straight quality starts.

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