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Chris Sale does job, but pen doesn’t in loss

Updated: July 9, 2014 10:28PM



BOSTON — White Sox left-hander Chris Sale freshened up his résumé for the All-Star Game.

Not that he really needed to.

While Sale continued to lead the Final Vote that will determine the 34th spot on the American League roster for the game Tuesday in Minneapolis, he was one more sore-armed AL pitcher away from being added to the squad before the voting closes at 3 p.m. Thursday. The Yankees’ Masahiro Tanaka went on the disabled list Wednesday and was replaced by the Red Sox’ Koji Uehara. Because some All-Stars will pitch Sunday and won’t be available for the game, more shuffling and additions are expected.

Uehara became the winning pitcher in a game that looked like a lock for Sale, who left with a four-run lead against the Red Sox in the eighth inning. Manager Robin Ventura turned the game over to the bullpen with two outs and a man on third, and the Red Sox scored three runs against Jake Petricka in the eighth and two more against Javy Guerra in the ninth to walk off with a stunning 5-4 victory.

‘‘Jake’s been great, especially with righties,” Ventura said,
explaining the decision to pull Sale. ‘‘We just couldn’t hold it.’’

Sale threw 107 pitches, 80 of them for strikes, and Ventura said he appeared to be showing signs of fatigue the fourth time through the Red Sox’ lineup.

‘‘That was the spot,’’ Ventura said. ‘‘At that point, he had been pitching hard. That’s part of it — the way he was pitching.’’

The Red Sox, starting five rookies in the midst of a free fall that has dropped them into last place in the AL East, looked like easy prey before Petricka failed to retire any of the four batters he faced in the eighth, ending his run of eight consecutive scoreless appearances.

The Sox still had a chance to
escape, but Guerra hit Mookie
Betts with a pitch with one out in the ninth before giving up a tying double to pinch hitter Daniel Nava and a walk-off single to Brock Holt. It was the Sox’ 12th blown save in 31 chances.

‘‘Anytime a starter goes out there and throws that way, he
deserves to win,’’ Guerra, who saved 29 games for the Dodgers in in 2011 and 2012, said of Sale. ‘‘The guy is special. The guy is throwing the ball great. Put it on me.’’

Jose Abreu hit his 28th home run, and Conor Gillaspie hit his second in two nights. Both took their homers out to center against Red Sox starter Rubby De La Rosa.

Gillaspie also doubled and scored, raising his average to .320. Alejandro De Aza had three hits, incuding a double and a triple, and Adam Eaton an RBI double.

All of that looked like more than plenty for Sale, but Petricka had his worst outing of the season.

‘‘You’re always disappointed when you come out of the game, whether it’s good or bad,’’ Sale said. ‘‘You always want to get through that inning. You’re going to look at that and highlight that, but you always want to stay out there and finish what you start.’’

Sale said he wasn’t trying to make a statement to Red Sox manager John Farrell, who essentially put him in the Final Vote by not selecting him outright.

‘‘I wasn’t trying to show him anything or persuade him,’’ Sale said. ‘‘That whole Final Vote thing is for the fans to adjudicate on, not myself. I’ll just let them do that and see where it goes.’’

Sale is running ahead of Angels right-hander Garrett Richards, Tigers right-hander Rick Porcello, Indians right-hander Corey Kluber and Astros left-hander Dallas Keuchel.

Email: dvanschouwen@suntimes.com

Twitter: @CST_soxvan



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