ANGELS 3, WHITE SOX 1
White Sox's eight-game winning streak ends
Floyd's wild 5th does in Sox in snappy game
White Sox winning streaks Friday night.
Their eight-game winning streak ended in a 3-1 loss to the Angels, the same team the streak started against, and Joe Saunders halted their five-game winning stretch against left-handed starters.
And the wild streak?
That belonged to Sox starter Gavin Floyd, who hit consecutive batters with the bases loaded in a lamentable fifth inning, the two runs being the deciding factor after the Sox scored a run and left the tying runs on base in the ninth inning.
"I just lost it for a half-inning," Floyd said. "I bounced back, made an adjustment and got back to where I was. It's unexplainable sometimes. I'd like to eliminate it, but it happens sometimes."
So it was a night of mixed results for Floyd (4-3), who pitched his first career complete game, allowed only three hits and retired 13 of his last 15 batters after hitting his last batter.
"I was happy that I was able to go long in the game and keep getting outs," Floyd said.
He was even happier that manager Ozzie Guillen "basically trusted me" during that disastrous inning when Torii Hunter homered right before the chaos.
"For now, I'm going to let him battle," Guillen said. "I did it before and he showed he could come out of it. That's the way you grow up in baseball. It's easy when you play and the bases are loaded with one out and I pinch-hit for you.
"The only way they are going come out of [tough times] is if you put them out there and hopefully things will come out for the best. Most of the time you always get the best out of them because if you give them the opportunity, they grab it and they appreciate it, too."
But the result was a loss for the Sox, who managed only two hits off Saunders, who had lost 10 pounds with flu, in eight innings.
Nonetheless they held on to first place in the American League Central, although Minnesota closed the gap to 21/2 games.
The Angels, in first place in the West Division, could count their lucky stars and thank Saunders.
"This guy is 8-1 for a reason," Guillen said. "He threw an unbelievable game. We kind of reacted a little bit late."
Saunders had been so ill he said he was green around the gills.
"He wasn't green, he looked more like a marine blue," Angels manager Mike Scioscia said.
The Sox mounted a rally in the ninth inning when Orlando Cabrera led off with a single and got to second on A.J. Pierzynski's groundout. Francisco Rodriguez relieved Saunders and walked Carlos Quentin. He then gave up an RBI single to Jermaine Dye.
Jim Thome and Joe Crede were due up, much to the delight of the 28,156 at U.S. Cellular Field on fireworks night.
"The way we've been playing lately, absolutely," Thome said when asked if he felt a winning rally coming on.
But he struck out and so did Crede, ending the team's eight-game winning streak.
"We never give up," said Thome, who also grounded out with runners on second and third to end the first inning. "Our pitchers have done a real nice job. They put us in a [winnable] situation like that."
Even with Floyd's faux pas for one inning, Sox starters are 5-1 with a 1.86 ERA over their last 10 games.
Floyd's problems came with two outs in the fifth. A walk, a single and a walk started it. Then he hit .204-hitting Maicer Izturus and .212-hitting Gary Matthews Jr. before recovering and getting Vladimir Guerrero.
It was all over in a remarkable 2 hours and 12 minutes.
"I had a meeting with the guys before the game about the [new] speed-up rules, but I didn't think they'd take me that seriously," Guillen said with a laugh.
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