Nicasio no-hits White Sox for five innings

Right-hander strikes out seven, walks one; Cuddyer has two hits, two RBIs

Nicasio no-hits White Sox for five innings

GLENDALE, Ariz. -- Juan Nicasio no-hit the White Sox over five innings Tuesday at Camelback Ranch as the Rockies cruised to a 4-1 victory.

The only baserunners allowed by the Colorado right-hander were Adam Eaton in the first, when he reached on a wild pitch off of a swinging third strike, and a one-out walk to Alexei Ramirez in the fifth. Nicasio fanned seven, including six in the first three innings.

"I had command of my fastball down and in, and my slider was a lot better today. I threw a lot of pitches for strikes," said Nicasio, who threw 81 pitches and felt strong enough to continue but had his day halted by pitching coach Jim Wright because of a little blood from his right middle finger caused by a cut under the nail. "Jimmy saw my fingernail, a little blood, and he said, 'OK, stop. That's it.'"

Chris Sale made his final Cactus League appearance before his second straight Opening Day start on Monday at U.S. Cellular Field against the Twins and worked just 3 2/3 innings. He yielded two runs on six hits, while striking out three and not issuing a walk.

"I'm just kind of shaking off the rest of the rust before the opener," Sale said. "Just getting prepared physically and mentally for the regular season. I've been ready for a few weeks now."

Drew Stubbs opened the game with a double off of the White Sox ace, followed by DJ LeMahieu's single, a wild pitch and Michael Cuddyer's single to give the Rockies a quick 2-0 lead. Jordan Pacheco's solo homer in the fifth and Cuddyer's run-scoring double in the same frame both came off of White Sox closing candidate Nate Jones.

Eaton delivered Chicago's first hit of the game in the sixth, dropping down a bunt single along the third-base line following Chad Bettis' one-out walk to Marcus Semien. Bettis also walked Avisail Garcia to load the bases, and Conor Gillaspie just missed a grand slam to right before settling for a sacrifice fly to center. It was the first earned run and just the fourth hit in nine appearances by Bettis, who is battling for a bullpen spot.

Up next: Left-handed Opening Day starter Jorge De La Rosa not only had an awful last start -- five runs, nine hits in three innings against the Indians -- but admitted he lost focus on the signs and had communications issues with catcher Wilin Rosario. He hopes to rebound in his final Cactus League start on Wednesday against the Giants at Scottsdale Stadium at 2:05 p.m. MDT.

Scott Merkin is a reporter for Read his blog, Merk's Works, and follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.