CLEVELAND — The White Sox used a can’t-lose formula to win an important game at Progressive Field on Friday night: An outstanding pitching performance and a three-run homer.
Gavin Floyd pitched 7 2/3 scoreless innings, staying on a good roll on the road with a 1.89 ERA over his last four starts as the Sox defeated the Indians 3-0.
“The story is that Gavin did unbelievable,” said right fielder Carlos Quentin, whose 20th home run of the season came with Paul Konerko and Adam Dunn on base in the fifth inning after the Sox had left two runners on in each of the first three innings. “We had some chances and didn’t get it done. It wasn’t for a lack of effort but it just didn’t get done early and he kept us right there 0-0 and he was unbelievable tonight.”
Quentin hit a 409-foot blast against Carlos Carrasco to left field and added two singles. The Sox have three homers in the last seven games, all by Quentin.
“We’re trying to get on the board so I saw him pretty good the first three pitches,” Quentin said. “I knew he didn’t want to get behind me 3-1. Usually I kind of hit off the fastball where I want it directionally. I tried to stay up the middle and got a pitch middle in. I put good wood on it and got it out.
“I gave my team a chance to win today so that’s all I can ask for in myself.”
The Sox got to within 3 1/2 games of the Indians in the AL Central. The Tigers defeated the Twins to maintain a 4 1/2 game lead. The Sox play the Tigers at home in a three-game series starting Monday.
“Every week is an important week for us,” Quentin said. “Those are formidable opponents and we have to play well against them.”
Matt Thornton bailed Floyd pitched out of a jam in the eighth and Sergio Santos pitched the ninth for the save.