In his last day before he is expected to be removed from the regular starting lineup when Jose Abreu is scheduled to return from the disabled list Monday in Los Angeles, Sox designated hitter Paul Konerko looked like the player that was the cornerstone of the Sox’ lineup throughout his career in Chicago when his team took on the Padres at U.S. Cellular Field in Sunday’s series finale.
In a Sox 4-1 win, Konerko drove in three of his team’s four runs. He first broke a scoreless tie when he hit a solo home run in the bottom of the second inning. Then in the bottom of the sixth inning, Konerko added to a one-run Sox lead when he hit a two-RBI double to score the final runs of the game.
Sox starter Chris Sale pitched a complete game and earned the win to move to 5-0, the first to do so on the south side since Mark Buehrle starterd the 2009 season 5-0.
Since returning from the disabled list, Sale has only allowed three hits in 18 innings of work over three starts. In his last start again Cleveland, Sale was pulled after pitching three no-hit innings due to a rain delay.
Sunday Sale only allowed two hits, both which came in the fifth inning. After retiring the first 12 San Diego batters, Padres third baseman Chase Headley hit a solo homer and left fielder Tommy Medica singled on the next at-bat. After the Medica single, Sale didn’t allow another base runner.
The complete game was Sale’s first of the season.