The game was billed as a pitcher’s duel between Houston’s Jarred Cosart and Chicago’s Chris Sale and while the pair were in the game, it lived up to expectations. Unfortunately a high pitch count limited Cosart to six innings and what was a 1-1 game in the seventh inning stretch turned into a 6-1 White Sox win.
Lucas Harrell came in to relieve Cosart in the seventh inning and entered the game with a 1-1 tie. Three walks, an error and a three-run home run later, the White Sox led 5-1 heading into the eighth.
The numbers will show Cosart did his job. Six innings pitched and one earned run. But there were seven hits and five walks in those innings, forcing his pitch count up to 112 by the end of the sixth causing him to leave the game with nine outs to get. The leadoff batter reached in four of six innings, three of them were walked. He did a good job limiting the damage, allowing just a single run in the first inning after the White Sox loaded the bases with no outs.
Chris Sale didn’t have the same difficulty getting through the Astros lineup, pitching through the eighth inning before leaving following a leadoff walk in the ninth. Sale gave up one run on four hits and two walks while striking out 12. He allowed just one runner to reach second base before Chris Carter blasted a solo home run in the seventh inning to briefly tie the game.
The Astros failed to muster much of an attack against the White Sox lefty. Chris Carter hit a double off the wall in the second inning and a solo homer in the seventh, but he was pretty much alone when it came to doing damage. Jake Elmore and Jonathan Villar were the only others who got a hit off of Sale.
Harrell’s control issues came up and bit him again in the seventh inning. A leadoff walk to Leury Garcia turned into a runner on third and no-outs when Garcia stole second and nobody covered the bag, allowing the throw to reach Brandon Barnes in centerfield.
Despite the error it looked like Harrell might be able to limit the damage, he induced a groundout from Gordon Beckham for the first out, but Jeff Keppinger followed with a fly ball to centerfield that was just deep enough to allow Garcia to score.
Harrell then walked the next two batters before giving up a three-run homer to Avisail Garcia.
In the eighth inning he gave up a leadoff double to Dayan Viciedo, and two batters later he scored on a Leury Garcia sacrifice fly.
The Astros put the Windy City behind them and travel back to Houston for a four-game series against Seatlle. Jordan Lyles (6-6, 5.15 ERA) will take the mound for the Astros and Erasmo Ramirez (4-1, 5.44 ERA) pitch for the Mariners. First pitch is scheduled for 7:10, coverage begins on CSN Houston with Astros Pregame Live starting at 6:30.