CHICAGO -- The White Sox have been victimized by their own poor defensive play on a number of occasions during the 2015 season. They also have missed out on more than a few chances for victories because of a lack of big hits.
But in a 4-2 victory over the Blue Jays on Monday night, beginning their final first-half home series, the White Sox took advantage of a Toronto defensive miscue and delivered with the bats with the game on the line to pick up their fifth victory in six games. They did it all against Mark Buehrle, the South Side's favorite son, who deserved a better fate with four unearned runs allowed in his fourth complete game.
They did it for staff ace Chris Sale. And while no team wants to pick favorites among their rotation, thefour-time All-Star had this one coming.
"Definitely. Big night for him," said White Sox leadoff man Adam Eaton, who scored a run during the three-run eighth. "For him to be down 2-1 in the eighth and for us as hitters to pick him up, he's picked us up year after year, day after day.
"Every start he has, he picks us up. For us to be able to pick him up in a big situation, it does a lot for the psyche of the team. Be able to pick each other up, it makes a good team great."
This White Sox team has played better baseball with a 9-5 record since an eight-game losing streak dropped them 10 under, but they still are 37-43 overall.
Wins such as Monday's, which improved the White Sox to 5-35 when trailing after seven, can point a struggling team in the right direction. The rally began with Jose Reyes' fielding error on Gordon Beckham's leadoff grounder. Two outs later, Eaton worked an 0-2 count full against Buehrle and singled to center to put runners on the corners.
Jose Abreu singled home the game-tying run, and Melky Cabrera's two-run double past third baseman Josh Donaldson and down the left-field line completed the comeback. Sale allowed two singles in the ninth, before Danny Valencia hit into a game-ending double play.
"It's good for the lineup to do that and pick him up," said White Sox manager Robin Ventura of the rally in support of Sale's complete-game, 108-pitch performance. "He's done his work before and not gotten much out of it."
"What a way to pull from behind," Sale said. "It's a tough guy to do it against, a tough team to do it against and our guys did it."