Chacin dominates, Brewers hit 4 HRs to beat White Sox 5-0
CHICAGO (AP) — The Milwaukee Brewers signed Jhoulys Chacin last winter expecting outings just like this. For the most part, he is delivering.
He combined with two relievers on a five-hitter, and the Milwaukee Brewers backed him with four home runs in a 5-0 victory over the Chicago White Sox on Saturday.
Chacin (4-1) pitched three-hit ball over 5 2/3 innings and the Brewers won for the sixth time in eight games. The NL Central leaders also picked up a rare victory over the White Sox after dropping 13 of their previous 16 against them.
“By the way he’s pitching, he’s given us a chance to win a whole bunch of times,” manager Craig Counsell said. “He’s exactly what we were looking for.”
Josh Hader got four outs while extending his scoreless streak to 14 1/3 innings. Taylor Williams worked the final two innings, escaping a second-and-third jam in the ninth. He retired Tim Anderson on a pop fly and got Omar Narvaez to foul out before striking out pinch hitter Daniel Palka to preserve the shutout.
Erik Kratz led off the third with a drive to the left-field bullpen for his second homer in three games since a trade from the New York Yankees last week. Jonathan Villar made it 2-0 when he homered toward the right-field line in the seventh.
Lorenzo Cain chased James Shields (1-6) with a shot to left in the eighth, and Jesus Aguilar added a two-run homer against Jace Fry in the inning to make it 5-0.
Chicago lost for the fifth time in six games and fell to 17-38 despite a solid performance by Shields.
The right-hander allowed three runs and eight hits in seven-plus innings. But he remained winless in 11 starts and 12 appearances since a season-opening victory at Kansas City. Even so, he’s gone at least seven innings in four straight outings while lowering his ERA from 5.44 to 4.48.
Manager Rick Renteria said he would “not be shocked” if contenders targeted him in a trade.
For now, Shields is frustrated.
“Frankly, I really don’t care about the rebuild right now,” he said. “I care about winning. They keep talking about rebuild, I’m trying to win ballgames right now. Period.”
A 13-game winner with San Diego last season, Chacin struck out five and walked one. He left in the sixth after second baseman Villar ranged to the shortstop side of the bag to make a sliding stop on Jose Abreu’s grounder up the middle and fired to first for the second out. That preserved a 1-0 lead, and Hader then struck out Jose Rondon looking to end the inning.
″(Villar’s stop) was huge,” Chacin said. “I was hoping for him to stop the ball, but he got the out. That was the game, there.”
The White Sox outrighted right-hander Ricardo Pinto to Triple-A Charlotte after designating him for assignment on Monday.
Brewers: The Brewers expect 1B Eric Thames (torn ligament in left thumb) to begin a rehab assignment with their extended spring training team in Arizona on Monday. Thames was injured diving for a grounder April 24 at Kansas City and had surgery three days later. ... The Brewers have not decided when INF Tyler Saladino (sprained left ankle) will resume baseball activities. He was playing shortstop when he jammed his ankle on the second-base bag taking a throw against St. Louis on Tuesday and was placed on the 10-day disabled list the following day.
White Sox: LHP Carlson Rodon (shoulder) will make another rehab start for Triple-A Charlotte on Sunday before the White Sox determine if he’s ready to join them for the first time this season. “I don’t want to prematurely tell you that he’s gonna be back,” Renteria said. “I want to make sure that everybody feels comfortable with where he’s at.” The 25-year-old Rodon had surgery on his pitching shoulder in September and will be making his fourth rehab start — third for Charlotte. ... Renteria said he is not sure when RF Avisail Garcia (right hamstring) will start baseball activities. The 2017 All-Star has been sidelined since April 23.
Brewers: LHP Brent Suter (5-3, 4.63 ERA) looks to win his fourth straight start.
White Sox: RHP Dylan Covey (1-1, 3.63) tries to bounce back from a shaky outing at Cleveland on Monday. He gave up five runs and three walks in 4 1/3 innings in a 9-6 loss, though he did not figure in the decision.
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