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Chris Sale is heavy-hearted because of the departed

Chicago White Sox pitcher Chris Sale delivers against ClevelIndians second inning baseball game Thursday Aug. 1 2013 Cleveland. (AP Photo/David

Chicago White Sox pitcher Chris Sale delivers against the Cleveland Indians in the second inning of a baseball game, Thursday, Aug. 1, 2013, in Cleveland. (AP Photo/David Richard)

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Updated: September 3, 2013 7:44AM



CLEVELAND — Chris Sale pitched with somewhat of a heavy heart Thursday. Two of the White Sox’ best pitchers, 2012 All-Star Jake Peavy and 2013 All-Star Jesse Crain, were gone in trades because of the team’s dreadful performance.

Sale, trying to make the dreadful slightly less so Thursday, failed.

“I’m not going to sit here and make excuses,’’ Sale said. “I got my butt kicked.’’

Sale’s 10 hits allowed in five innings matched his season-worst. He gave up five runs in a 6-1 loss that extended the Sox’ losing streak to seven games. The 24-year-old lefty’s ERA climbed to 2.92, and his record dropped to 6-11.

“It’s tough losing teammates, losing your buddies, losing your brothers,’’ he said. “This is kind of like a family. We spend more time in here than we do with our families. These guys are like brothers to myself and everyone in here, and seeing some guys you’ve seen around here for a while and some leaders step out of here is tough, but I’m not here to make excuses.

“We still have to win games.’’

Mainly because of run support of fewer than two runs a game, Sale is 1-9 over his last 10 starts. The only run he got Thursday was a home run by Alejandro De Aza against Justin Masterson. Sale didn’t walk a batter and struck out six.

Konerko ‘not far off’

Paul Konerko and Alex Rios were given the day off after a night game. Konerko continues to deal with minor back issues.

“It’s precautionary stuff,’’ manager Robin Ventura said.

Konerko, who ranks second in franchise history with 422 homers, has seven homers, his last on June 20 against Minnesota’s Scott Diamond. He was on the disabled list for 19 days in July.

“I know he’s still tinkering with stuff,’’ Ventura said. “I don’t think he’s where he wants to be right now the way he’s swinging the bat. It’s not as far off as you would think. There’s still something there that he’s working with. It’ll get there.’’

My glimmer with Andre

The life and energy shown by Andre Rienzo during his first start Tuesday carried over into the clubhouse. The Brazilian-born pitcher, the second player from his country to play in the majors after the Indians’ Yan Gomes, showed more energy during his start than the rest of the team, pitching coach Don Cooper said.

“I think you always want to be going at 100 [miles per hour],’’ said Rienzo, who didn’t allow an earned run in seven innings.

This and that

Shortstop Marcus Semien has been promoted from Class AA Birmingham to Class AAA Charlotte. Semien, 22, was hitting .290 with 15 homers and 49 RBI and led the Southern League in hits (114), runs (90), on-base percentage (.420), total bases (190) and walks (84).

◆ Steve Stone was feeling much better Thursday and will return to the broadcast booth in Detroit. Stone has been fighting an infection.



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