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White Sox squeeze past Blue Jays

Dylan Covey provided a strong start, and the White Sox got the go-ahead run on a squeeze bunt to open a four-game series against the Jays.

Photo by Nuccio DiNuzzo/Getty Images

The White Sox and Ryan Cordell squeezed out a victory Thursday night.

Cordell’s suicide squeeze scored Yolmer Sanchez with the go-ahead run, Charlie Tilson beat a throw home from short left field on a sacrifice fly for insurance and Sox pitchers held the Blue Jays to two hits in a 4-2 victory before 20,119 fans at Guaranteed Rate Field.

Dylan Covey pitched 5‰ innings of two-hit ball, allowing one earned run, and Evan Marshall, Kelvin Herrera (1-2) and Alex Colome (ninth save in nine opportunities) did not allow a hit in relief.

Covey allowed a leadoff home run in the second inning to Freddy Galvis, then a single to Brandon Drury before retiring 12 in a row. He struck out one and walked two. A throwing error by third baseman Yoan Moncada accounted for the Jays’ second run.

In the decisive eighth, Sanchez walked, advanced to third on a single by Tilson

(2-for-4) and scored on Cordell’s squeeze bunt. Tilson scored on a sacrifice fly by Leury Garcia, who also had two hits, scored a run and played a strong game at shortstop in place of a resting Tim Anderson.

“In the moment, I just kind of locked in and focused on getting the job done,” said Cordell, who was given two safety-squeeze signs, one swing-away sign and one suicide-squeeze sign in the four-pitch at-bat. “When I got to first base and looked in and saw the dugout going nuts, that’s a real exciting thing.”

“You’ve got to give Cordell a ton of credit because he’s the one in the box in that situation in the heat of the moment,” manager Rick Renteria said.

RBI singles by Welington Castillo and Cordell against Marcus Stroman gave the Sox (20-22) their first two runs.

Banuelos improving

For the time being, left-hander Manny Banuelos is staying off the injured list after leaving his start Tuesday against the Indians with a shoulder strain.

After the Sox’ day off Wednesday, a roster move putting Banuelos on the IL was anticipated — perhaps with the addition of a bullpen arm until a starter is needed before Banuelos’ turn Monday in Houston — but the bullpen was rested after the day off, and Renteria said an MRI exam on Banuelos’ shoulder was clean.

“Manny is continuing to improve; right now he’s day-to-day,” Renteria said.

“We’ll see how he feels tomorrow, and we’ll continue to move forward until we know otherwise.”

Banuelos was unavailable for comment. Renteria said it’s possible for Banuelos to start Monday, but a pitcher throwing 80-plus pitches six days after walking off a mound with a trainer seems improbable.

‘‘We’ll see how he feels [Friday] and go from there,” Renteria said.

Jimenez at Charlotte

Eloy Jimenez singled twice in five at-bats, struck out twice and made a throwing error in left field in his third minor-league rehab game for Class AAA Charlotte.

Jimenez is expected back by Monday, if not sooner.

“As long as he’s healthy, it’s encouraging,” Renteria said. “So right now he’s moving along.”