You knew John Danks’ formula couldn’t be successful forever.
Following 13 straight innings in which he pitched out of every jam, Danks found a mess he couldn’t avoid on Saturday night.
Miguel Cabrera homered and the Detroit Tigers rallied for five runs in the fifth inning as the White Sox lost 7-1 in front of 28,368 at U.S. Cellular Field. Following a 10-hit shutout in Houston on Sunday, Danks allowed five earned runs and 11 hits in 4 2/3 innings while David Price struck out 11 to help the Tigers snap an eight-game losing streak. The White Sox send Jeff Samardzija against Detroit’s Alfredo Simon in the rubber match on Sunday afternoon.
“I made a bad pitch to Miggy and he’s the best hitter in the game,” Danks said. “I felt good. I felt like (Geovany Soto) and I were both doing a good job of navigating the lineup. For whatever reason the ball got up. They were able to put the bat on the ball and find some holes. It’s just a lot of hits in one inning.”
[SHOP: Gear up, White Sox fans!]
When he bested the Astros at Minute Maid Field last Sunday, Danks became the first major league pitcher since Carlos Silva in 2004 to pitch a shutout with at least 10 hits allowed.
Danks (3-5) applied the same formula Saturday and it worked early on. The left-hander stranded two runners in the first, third and fourth innings as he pitched around four hits and two walks. Dating back to Sunday, Danks posted 13 scoreless innings in spite of 14 hits allowed and three walks.
He didn’t have as much luck in the fifth, however.
Cabrera blasted a 1-1 cut-fastball out to center with a man aboard, his first homer since May 24, to give the Tigers a 2-1 advantage.
“It kind of unraveled at that point,” White Sox manager Robin Ventura said. “I thought he was getting the ball up. He would get ahead and just couldn't put them away.”
James McCann followed singles by Yoenis Cespedes and Nick Castellanos with an RBI double and Josh Wilson and Jose Iglesias each had two-out RBI singles to chase Danks and make it a 5-1 game. Detroit finished the inning with seven hits off Danks, who threw strikes on 64 of 91 pitches.
“They were able to flip it out there and keep the line moving,” Danks said.
While the White Sox had plenty of early hard contact against Price (5-2), they couldn’t keep pace against the former American League Cy Young winner.
The White Sox took a 1-0 lead in the third inning on doubles by Emilio Bonifacio and Alexei Ramirez. But Price buckled down and minimized the damage as he mixed good fortune and a bit of dominance.
Whereas he needed his defense to stop a pair of Jose Abreu hot shots in the first and third innings, Price did it on his own later. He wiped out a leadoff Adam LaRoche single in the fourth inning with a double play off the bat of Gordon Beckham. Then he began a string of seven straight strikeouts with a whiff of Geovany Soto. Price struck out Avisail Garcia three times.
“We hit well but they were in a good position to catch the ball,” Ramirez said through an interpreter. “We hit him very well in the beginning of the game, we just didn’t get lucky.”
Detroit added on to their lead with RBI doubles in the seventh and eighth innings by Iglesias and J.D. Martinez off Hector Noesi, respectively. The Tigers finished with 18 hits, including four by Wilson.
Price limited the White Sox to five hits in a complete-game effort.
“We just ran into David Price tonight and that’s about all you need to know,” Danks said.