Jose Abreu homered in the first.
And that was all for the White Sox’ offense in their 5-2 loss to the Indians on Thursday at Guaranteed Rate Field.
Jose Ramirez’s two-run homer against Chris Volstad broke a 2-2 tie in the seventh inning, and right-hander Mike Clevinger (5-2) struck out 11 and held the Sox to one earned run in seven innings as the Indians (36-31) gained a split in their four-game series with the Sox (24-43).
Abreu’s homer, the 135th of his career, tied him with fellow Cuban Minnie Minoso for 12th on the Sox’ all-time list. He passed Jim Thome, who slugged 134 with the Sox.
After Indians shortstop Francisco Lindor led off the game with a home run against Sox left-hander Carlos Rodon, Abreu answered with a two-run, opposite-field shot. Abreu (2-for-4) collected his 39th and 40th RBI with the homer, his 11th, to erase the 1-0 deficit.
Rodon hit a batter and walked three in the third, including a free pass to Yan Gomes with the bases loaded that forced in the Indians’ second run. Rodon’s high pitch count (100, 59 for strikes) prevented him from pitching past the fifth inning for the second time in as many starts.
“Need to be more consistent,’’ Rodon said. “Falling behind, putting myself in bad situations. Gotta go deeper in the game for the team. Not my best.’’
Rodon (3.60 ERA) allowed two hits, walked three and hit two batters. He struck out four.
Ramirez’s homer against Volstad, with first base open and two outs, snapped the Sox bullpen’s scoreless-innings streak at 25„ innings. It was the longest streak by Sox relievers since the 1991 team’s streak of 31„ innings.
“If you think any of us wanted a pitch right down the middle, no, that was not the intent,’’ manager Rick Renteria said when asked if he considered walking the switch-hitting Ramirez with the right-handed-hitting Edwin Encarnacion on deck. “He had him with two strikes; obviously we don’t want to throw anything near the plate.’’
The Indians scored a fifth run on Juan Minaya’s drop covering first on a grounder to Abreu.
Jones knew when to say when
Right-hander Nate Jones, who went on the 10-day disabled list with a right forearm strain Wednesday, said he had been pitching through discomfort for “two or three weeks” and was able to get through it not pitching on consecutive days very often.
“On one pitch [Tuesday], it kind of started burning a bit,” Jones said. “I knew I was hurting the team rather than helping, so I had to say something, get something done, and that’s where we’re at now.”
Jones, who had Tommy John surgery in 2016, said he was relieved when the MRI showed no structural damage.
“I’m not really sure about all the medical terms [pronator muscle strain],’’ Jones said, ‘‘but we’re [in the trainer’s room] getting it right.”
Jones will not throw for several days and likely will be on the DL beyond the 10 days.
This and that
Kevan Smith extended his hitting streak to seven games since getting called up from Class AAA Charlotte.
† Charlie Tilson had two hits, raising his average to .286, but was doubled off first on Adam Engel’s lineout to Ramirez at third.
On deck: Tigers at White Sox
Friday: Mike Fiers (5-3, 4.01) vs. Reynaldo Lopez (2-4, 3.26), 7:10 p.m., NBCSCH, 720-AM
Saturday: TBA vs. Lucas Giolito (4-7, 7.09), 1:10 p.m., NBCSCH, 720-AM
Sunday: Blaine Hardy (2-1, 3.55) vs. James Shields (2-7, 4.63), 1:10 p.m., Ch. 9, 720-AM