Kopech, Pollock lead White Sox to 4-0 win over Dodgers
CHICAGO (AP) — Michael Kopech pitched six innings of one-hit ball, pinch-hitter AJ Pollock delivered a two-run double against his former team and the Chicago White Sox beat the Los Angeles Dodgers 4-0 on Tuesday night.
Pollock’s clutch swing off the bench sparked a four-run sixth that sent the White Sox to their third consecutive victory.
The NL West-leading Dodgers dropped their third straight.
“For what could be possible down the road is why there is that rise-to-the-occasion mantra,” Kopech said. “I think we want to beat these guys at the end of the season in October.
“Obviously, we’ve got to get there first. These are teams that are very capable of being playoff teams, more than likely going to be playoff teams. So for us to compete well against them, it goes a long way.”
It was the fourth time this season Kopech worked at least five innings and limited an opponent to one hit. He also did it against the Rays on April 16 and against the Yankees on May 15 and in the second game of a May 22 doubleheader.
Kopech (2-2) struck out eight and walked one, lowering his ERA to 1.94 and earning his second win in his last three starts. The right-hander retired 11 of his first 12 batters — six on strikeouts — before Will Smith hit a soft single to left-center.
“To be honest, I’ve tried not to look at my stats the entire year,” Kopech said. “My dad was telling me my stats were good a couple weeks ago. I said, ‘Dad, listen, I don’t want to talk about this.’ So with all due respect, I’m going to say the same to you.”
Pollock, traded from the Dodgers to the White Sox on April 1 for closer Craig Kimbrel, was summoned to bat for Gavin Sheets after the Dodgers lifted reliever Phil Bickford (0-1) in favor of left-hander David Price with two outs in the sixth. Pollock was 4 for 31 (.129) in his last nine games before snapping the scoreless tie.
“I had a lot of intrasquad battles the last few years with COVID and the weird preseason,” Pollock said. “It’s always fun battling those guys, and it’s good to get a win against anyone. But yeah, that’s a good ballclub over there. I know that’s a tough team and a little extra special.”
Jake Burger followed with an RBI double. After the Dodgers elected to walk switch-hitter Yoan Moncada, who had six hits in his last 55 at-bats (.109), Reese McGuire foiled the strategy by hitting an RBI single to cap the rally.
Dodgers starter Mitch White, making his eighth career start and 32nd major league appearance, retired his first 12 batters. He loaded the bases in the fifth before striking out McGuire and Josh Harrison.
“(White) kept a good lineup at bay,” Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said. “That fifth inning was a lot of stress, and he found a way to get two strikeouts to finish that inning off. I just felt that was all we could get out of him.”
Reynaldo Lopez, Aaron Bummer, Kendall Graveman and Liam Hendriks combined to pitch the final three innings to secure Chicago’s fifth shutout of the season.
Justin Turner singled in the seventh for his 1,000th hit with the Dodgers.
SPREADING THE BLAME
White Sox general manager Rick Hahn declined to put the team’s disappointing start exclusively on manager Tony La Russa. “We are in this as an organization, and none of us as an organization are satisfied with where we are at right now,” Hahn said. “To a man and to a woman, we feel good about what the next several months hold for us potentially.”
Kimbrel was placed on paternity leave and the Dodgers recalled Bickford from Triple-A Oklahoma City.
Dodgers: LHP Clayton Kershaw (lower back inflammation) anticipates he’ll return Sunday at San Francisco. “Unless something changes, I’ll be ready to go,” said Kershaw, who hasn’t pitched in a major league game since May 7. Roberts said Kershaw is projected to pitch five innings.
White Sox: RHP Lance Lynn will make his third rehab start Wednesday for Triple-A Charlotte, and his status will be reassessed with the chance he could be activated soon, Hahn said. … SS Tim Anderson (right groin strain) and RHPs Vince Velasquez (left groin strain) and Joe Kelly (left hamstring strain) could start rehab assignments next week.
Dodgers: RHP Tony Gonsolin (6-0, 1.59 ERA) will face the White Sox on Wednesday. Gonsolin threw six innings of two-hit ball Thursday in a 2-0 win over the Mets.
White Sox: RHP Johnny Cueto (0-2, 2.92) allowed four runs over six innings Thursday in an 8-3 loss to the Blue Jays.
More AP MLB: https://apnews.com/hub/mlb and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports
Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.