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Buehrle solves his problems with Cleveland

4/11/2003

CLEVELAND (AP) -- During his brief career, Mark Buehrle has
struggled against the Cleveland Indians.

Not these Cleveland Indians.

Buehrle wasted little time while shutting down Cleveland for
seven innings and Magglio Ordonez homered Thursday night to give
the Chicago White Sox a 7-2 win over the Indians.

Working quickly on another chilly night at Jacobs Field, Buehrle
(2-1) allowed one run and five hits while facing a Cleveland lineup
vastly different from the ones he remembered.

"I was kind of happy to see Jim Thome gone,'' he said.
"They're a young team now that's rebuilding.''

Buehrle slowed the process.

The left-hander, who shut out Detroit for eight innings in his
last start, extended his scoreless streak to 18 innings before
allowing a run with two outs in the sixth.

Sandy Alomar Jr. went 3-for-3 with two RBI as the White Sox won
two of three in the series. Alomar was 6-for-7 with four RBI in
the three-game set.

Alomar downplayed his success against the Indians, his team from
1990-2000.

"At this point that really doesn't matter,'' Alomar said. "I
have nothing against them. It's been three years now, so I'm way
over the hump.''

The White Sox scored five runs in the first off rookie Jason
Davis (0-2), who hurt himself with two walks in the inning and only
lasted four.

Davis settled down after the rough first, but by then it was too
late for the Indians, who stranded a season-high 10 and can't bust
out of an early-season slump.

"I wish I could take back that first inning, but you can't,''
Davis said. "It's going to be a tough five days (between starts)
for me but I can't wait to get back out there.''

The way he's going, neither can Buehrle.

Last season, Buehrle's 34 starts were completed in an average of
2 hours, 41 minutes -- 11 minutes quicker than the league average.
He worked at his usual pace against the Indians, who came in
batting just .203 as a team.

The only thing that slowed Buehrle down in the 2:25 game was
Chicago's bullpen as Tom Gordon loaded the bases in the eighth.
Damaso Marte came on and walked in a run before striking out two to
end the inning.

Buehrle, who improved to 4-4 in nine starts against Cleveland,
allowed just two hits through the first five innings before Milton
Bradley led off with a double in the sixth and scored on Ellis
Burks' two-out single.

White Sox manager Jerry Manuel was impressed by Buehrle's gutsy
outing.

"He's a guy that once he gets into a rhythm and flow, no matter who he's facing, he's real tough,'' Manuel said. "I don't know if he had his best stuff tonight, but he's a survivor -- and sometimes that's enough.''

Ordonez made it 6-0 in the fifth with his second homer, a shot
that barely cleared the wall in right.

Ordonez initially stopped at second, thinking he had doubled.
But after first base umpire Brian Gorman consulted with the rest of
the crew, Ordonez was waved around.

Davis walked two and the White Sox had five singles -- three of
them weak hits -- in their five-run first.

After Davis, who had early problems in his start last week at Kansas City, issued the walks, Ordonez hit an RBI single and Paul Konerko beat out an infield chopper behind the mound, loading the bases.

One out later, Joe Crede hit a grounder that Davis couldn't handle and Thomas scored to make it 2-0. Rios followed with a two-run single, and Alomar capped the inning with a soft RBI single.

"He's had some weird things happen to him early in games, and
it has dominoed on him,'' Wedge said of Davis. "But he'll learn
from these experiences and be better off in the long run.''

Alomar's RBI double put the White Sox ahead 7-1 in the eighth.

Game notes
Ordonez scored his 500th career run in the first. His homer
was 151st, moving him within three of tying Bill Melton for fifth
place on the club's career list. ... With temperatures in the 30s,
it still feels like winter. Slider, the Indians' furry mascot,
handed out gifts to the crowd dressed as Santa Claus. ... Bradley
extended his hitting streak to a career-high eight games. ...
Buehrle's scoreless streak was the second longest of his career. In
2001, he went 24 2/3 innings without allowing a run, the longest
streak for the White Sox since Tommy John (25 innings) in 1967.