ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) -- The Chicago White Sox beat the Los
Angeles Angels in 11 innings thanks to a clutch hit from Tadahito
Iguchi. They accomplished it in just 2 hours, 50 minutes thanks to
Mark Buehrle's fast pace.
Iguchi hit a run-scoring double in the 11th and Carl Everett
homered, leading the White Sox to a 2-1 victory in a matchup of
division leaders Tuesday night. Chicago improved to a major
league-best 32-14, equaling the 1951 and 1957 White Sox for the
best start in the franchise's history.
Buehrle, trying to win his fifth straight start and seventh
consecutive decision, allowed one run and four hits in nine
innings. The left-hander, who struck out six and walked two, did
not allow a hit after Bengie Molina's one-out single in the fifth.
"It was one of those days where I had every pitch working for
me, and I felt like I could throw any pitch in any situation,"
Buehrle said. "I knew I'd need my changeup tonight, because I knew
these guys were sitting on my fastball."
The first nine innings were played in a crisp 2:24. Buehrle's
first nine starts had an average time of 2:21, including two games
lasting under 2 hours. His average last season was a major
"We're kind of spoiled by him," first baseman Paul Konerko
said. "He's the best to play behind -- ever. You know that when
he's pitching, it's always a quick game whether he wins or loses.
He just gets the ball and throws it. He just knows how to pitch and
he doesn't second-guess himself or the catcher too much."
Buehrle thinks working quickly is the only way to pitch.
"I've never had a coach or a scout or anybody say, `The quicker
you work, the better off you're going to be.' I've always pitched
that way," he said. "I just don't see a reason to go out there,
pickup the resin bag, walk around the mound and rub the ball every
time. Just get on the mound, get the ball and get your next sign.
That's just me.
"I still think it can be quicker than that if you get that
stupid TV timeout garbage out of there -- because half the time I'm
ready to go and I've still got to stand around an extra 20 seconds
waiting for that."
Joe Crede led off the 11th with a single against Esteban Yan
(0-1), advanced on Juan Uribe's sacrifice and Scott Podsednik's
groundout, then scored on Iguchi's single to left-center. Damaso
Marte (3-3) got the victory, retiring six straight batters.
Bartolo Colon, who allowed one run in eight innings at Cleveland
last Wednesday on three days' rest, threw 114 pitches in seven
innings and held Chicago to three hits, including Everett's sixth
Pitching on his 32nd birthday, Colon struck out six, walked none
and retired 15 of his last 16 batters. It was the fifth straight
start in which he allowed fewer than three runs, but he is only 2-1
during that stretch.
"I was able to almost keep up the tempo with Buehrle," said
Colon, a teammate of Buehrle's in 2003. "I know he works fast, and
I wanted to keep up the tempo with him because I wanted to do to
their hitters what he was doing to ours. It worked out pretty good,
but he was on top of his game. Yesterday he was joking around with
me and he said, `Bart, be ready for me. I'm going to come get you.'
Angels utilityman Chone Figgins, starting in left field because
of Garret Anderson's recent hamstring problems, robbed A.J.
Pierzynski of extra bases with a diving catch in the fourth.
Figgins led off the bottom half with a single, advanced on a
hit-and-run groundout by Darin Erstad and scored on Anderson's
double inside first base to tie the score.
The White Sox, who have led in 44 of 46 games, opened the
scoring in the second when Everett drove a 3-2 pitch to right field
for the first homer allowed by Colon in his last five outings. Only
four of Chicago's 51 homers have come with more than one runner on
base, and 31 were solo shots.
Juan Rivera singled in the second and was caught stealing, after
Buehrle threw to first to trigger a rundown play. Rivera was the
first runner this season to attempt a stolen base against Buehrle,
who has picked off 33 runners in his career.
Buehrle has pitched at least six innings in 38 consecutive
starts, the longest streak in the majors since Curt Schilling's 39
straight from 2001-3. ... Frank Thomas was 0-for-2 with two walks
and an RBI in the seventh game of his rehab assignment with
Triple-A Charlotte. ... The White Sox lead the AL with a 3.19 ERA.
Only once since 1967 have they finished a 162-game season with the
league's lowest ERA (2.33 in 1993).