Dunn homers, Escobar delivers White Sox win
Sale goes 4 1/3, yields five runs; Lillibridge tallies three hits
GLENDALE, Ariz. -- The final score of Wednesday afternoon's Cactus League contest at Camelback Ranch read White Sox 9, Angels 7.
But the score within the score shows Albert Pujols 2, Adam Dunn 1.
Pujols, who came into the game homerless during Cactus League action, launched about 950 feet of long balls against White Sox starter Chris Sale in the third and against reliever Anthony Carter in the fifth.
Even Sale admitted that he lost track of Pujols' first blast, a three-run shot down the left-field line, after it took flight. Sale hit Pujols with his first offering in the first inning.
"Well yeah, a hitter like him, he's arguably the best in the game," said Sale of Pujols. "You see fastball in, you got to get it in. He proved a couple of innings later that if you're going in, you better get it in there."
"I don't really look for that. I try to just put a good swing on it all the time," said Pujols of looking to go deep. "I'm not sitting out there trying to hit the ball out of the park. I'm just trying to hit the ball back to the middle and let the ball get deep and try to make good swings every day."
Meanwhile Dunn continued his strong bounce-back spring. The designated hitter returned from a one-game absence due to a stiff neck to draw a leadoff walk in the second and then knock out a prodigious two-run homer to right in the sixth off Angels closer Jordan Walden. He walked again in the eighth.
Chicago's Eduardo Escobar hit a two-run single to break a 7-7 tie in the eighth inning and provided the White Sox with the winning margin.
Sale lasted the longest of any White Sox starter during Spring Training, pitching 4 1/3 innings, so endurance is not an issue for the converted late-inning reliever. But the southpaw gave up five runs on seven hits, while striking out two and not issuing a walk.
"What, I've thrown eight innings? Given up eight runs? That's unacceptable on every level, I don't care who you are," said Sale, who has allowed 10 hits and eight earned runs over 7 1/3 innings and two starts this spring. "By no means am I going to go home and kick myself in the rear, but I'm disappointed with what happened today. At the same time there are positives on what happened with this."
Angels starter Ervin Santana lasted just 1 1/3 innings. He was knocked out of the game by Alexei Ramirez's line drive off his right shoulder, with the injury being diagnosed as a right shoulder bruise. He's listed as day to day.
Brent Lillibridge knocked out three hits from the leadoff spot and Tyler Flowers went deep for the White Sox, while Howard Kendrick had three hits, including a two-run homer to right, for the Angels.
Up next for the White Sox: With Philip Humber scheduled to face Cleveland during the fifth game of the regular season, the White Sox aren't running him out Thursday against the Indians in Goodyear. Instead, Humber will throw three innings or 57 pitches during a morning "B" game against the Mariners in Glendale. Hector Santiago also is scheduled to throw in that contest, targeting two innings or 46 pitches. Both Dylan Axelrod (three innings or 65 pitches) and Zack Stewart (two innings, 48 pitches) will throw in the afternoon Cactus League contest on the road against Cleveland at 3:05 p.m. CT, live on MLB.TV. Dan Johnson is scheduled to make his first spring start at third base during the "B" game.