CLEVELAND — Lucas Giolito carried a shutout into the eighth inning and James McCann stayed with hot with an RBI single, leading the Chicago White Sox to a 2-0 win over the light-hitting, light-scoring Cleveland Indians on Tuesday night.
Giolito (3-1) didn’t have to work hard against the Indians, who came in batting an AL-low .213 — 13 points lower than the next closest team, and 62 behind the league-leading Houston Astros.
The Indians wasted a strong outing by starter Jefry Rodriguez (0-2). Cleveland has been shut out twice in three games and scored just one run in the past 27 innings.
Giolito, who allowed just three hits, retired the leadoff hitter to start what became an eventful eighth.
The right-hander was lifted after 105 pitches for reliever Jace Fry, who got the second out before the Indians loaded the bases on a single, double and walk.
Chicago closer Alex Colomé came in and appeared to get two quick strikes on Carlos Santana. But third base umpire Marty Foster ruled Santana checked his swing on a 0-1 pitch, and ejected manager Rick Renteria, who came out of the dugout and argued along with waving his arms in disgust.
Colomé then struck out Santana, freezing him on a 3-2 pitch that appeared low. The right-hander then worked the ninth for his seventh save in seven tries.
The Indians managed just five hits — three by Francisco Lindor, and two by Jason Kipnis.
McCann delivered a run-scoring single in the sixth off Rodriguez, who probably deserved a better outcome but his teammates are showing no signs of emerging from lengthy slump.
MCann is batting .422 with nine RBIs in his past 11 games.
The Indians got a runner to third in the fourth and put two on in the sixth, but Giolito struck out Santana to keep the Indians off the scoreboard.
Giolito improved to 3-0 on the road, and appears to have fully recovered from a pulled left hamstring that landed him on the disabled list last month.
Chicago took a 1-0 lead in the second inning on Yoán Moncada’s RBI single off Rodriguez, who worked out of a bases-loaded jam in the fourth to keep Cleveland close.
Chicago was in position for a big inning, but Rodriguez got bat-flipping Tim Anderson to bounce into a forceout at the plate before striking out Sanchez to end the threat.
White Sox: RHP Kelvin Herrera (lower back stiffness) was unavailable for the second straight game. He allowed a career-high five runs in 2/3 of an inning Sunday against Boston.
Indians: RHP Mike Clevinger (back strain) continues to make solid progress toward a return. He’s throwing two straight days and taking a day off. Manager Terry Francona said Clevinger, who has been out since April 7, should be throwing bullpens in the “not-too-distant future.”
White Sox: RHP Reynaldo López (2-4, 6.69 ERA) is 0-3 with an 8.31 ERA in three career starts against Cleveland. He hasn’t won on the road since Sept. 15 against Baltimore.
Indians: RHP Shane Bieber (2-1, 3.16 ERA) pitched a career-high 7 2/3 innings against Seattle in his last start Friday. As a rookie last season, he went 1-0 and didn’t allow an earned run in 12 2/3 innings against Chicago.
CLEVELAND — Corey Kluber’s broken right arm isn’t all that’s hurting him.
Less than one week after absorbing the impact of a 102 mph line drive during a start in Miami, Cleveland’s two-time AL Cy Young Award winner said Tuesday he still is coming to grips with his injury.
“You want to be out there with the team,” Kluber said, speaking for the first time since getting hit. “You want to be contributing. When it’s your day to pitch, you want to be able to take the ball every fifth day.”
That won’t happen for a while, but Kluber remains optimistic he’ll be able to return and pitch this season.
“I don’t have a plan not to pitch again,” he said. “Obviously, I don’t have a definitive timeline because it’s all depending on how things heal. But in my mind, I’m not looking at it as season ending.”
Sitting at a small table in a room across the hallway from the Indians’ clubhouse, Kluber occasionally peered at his arm which has been fitted with a soft cast. The 33-year-old will undergo weekly X-rays before doctors will know whether his bone has healed properly and he can avoid surgery.
Until then, Kluber’s biggest challenge is staying positive and optimistic. It’s not so bad now because the Indians are playing at home and his teammates are around to support him.
Soon, though, Kluber will be alone.
“The initial stage where you’re not able to do much, you just kind of have to sit around and be at your body’s mercy,” he said. “That’s probably the most frustrating thing.”
It’s impossible to say with any certainty whether Kluber, who went 20-7 last season, will be on the mound again in 2019. But manager Terry Francona is confident the right-hander will do everything within his power to return to the rotation.
“We know he’s hurting that he’s not pitching,” Francona said. “We also know him well enough that he’s going to do everything in his power to be as good as he can be as quick as he can be. That’s a given.”
Kluber wasn’t pitching at his usual high level before getting hurt, going 2-3 with a 5.80 ERA in seven starts. If there is a silver lining in his injury, it could be that he’ll be able to rest an arm that has logged over 200 innings in each of the past five seasons.
“We don’t want him out. But since he is out, that’s one way to look at it because he has shouldered a huge load the last five years,” Francona said. “Good pitchers do. So that’s one way you can certainly look at it. I think I said that about (Carlos) Carrasco a couple years ago when he pulled his hammy.
“When he came back he was stronger, his tank was so full because he hadn’t thrown a bunch of innings.”
Kluber won’t know if the time away will help until he’s back.
“Generally speaking, I tend to feel better the more I throw, the more we get into the season, so I don’t think that throwing every fifth day for six months has been a problem for me,” he said. “But, I guess we’ll just have to wait and see how that is when we get there. I can’t say one way or the other.”
Kluber’s injury has further taxed Cleveland’s pitching staff, which is also without starter Mike Clevinger. He’s recovering from a back injury and will miss another month.
The Indians were counting on their pitching to carry them to a fourth straight AL Central title. But the club isn’t hitting, either, and Kluber’s injury has presented a new hurdle.
Kluber, though, believes the Indians have enough talent to win.
“Whichever 25 guys are in that room, that’s who you’re going to battle with that day and you have confidence that they’re there for a reason,” he said. “I don’t think that changes based on who is or who isn’t hurt and I think that’s the approach we take every day is we have 25 guys on our roster and trying to utilize those 25 guys the best we can to win that day.”