CHICAGO (AP)—The White Sox couldn’t put good wood on Chad Gaudin’s high and tight fastball.
“We couldn’t lay off high fastballs,” White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen said. “He kept the ball high and in, and we couldn’t lay off the ball all night.”
Gaudin (4-1) faced the minimum through six innings, retired 16 straight from the second to the seventh and won his second straight start to help the A’s end a three-game losing streak. He gave up five hits and struck out four in 7 1-3 innings, walking one.
“I was just attacking the zone and letting them know that I’m not going to pitch around them,” Gaudin said. “I had pretty good stuff today. I was locating my fastball pretty well early and jumping ahead of hitters.”
Gaudin didn’t allow a hit from the second until the eighth when A.J. Pierzynski’s bloop single dropped past third base with one out. Juan Uribe followed with a hard-hit single to center and Rob Mackowiak nearly took Gaudin deep, but his hit bounced off Nick Swisher’s glove at the right-field wall, loading the bases and ending Gaudin’s night. Jay Marshall got a force out at home and a ground out to end the threat.
“When the ball left Mackowiak’s bat, I thought it was a home run and we’re back in the game,” White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen said. “I think the wind helped the ball (stay in).”
Alan Embree pitched a perfect ninth for Oakland.
“It’s tremendous,” Gaudin said of the bullpen. “You couldn’t ask for more.”
The White Sox had scored 28 runs over a three-game winning streak, but couldn’t get much going against Gaudin early in the game.
“He didn’t throw anything in the middle of the plate, but he didn’t walk anybody,” White Sox first baseman Paul Konerko said. “That sums it up.”
Darin Erstad led off the bottom of the first with a single but got doubled up at second. Dye got a hit to left to lead off the second inning, but was thrown out trying to stretch it into a double by Shannon Stewart. Gaudin was perfect after that until he walked Jim Thome with two outs in the seventh.
“We’re really happy with Chad Gaudin tonight,” A’s manager Bob Geren said. “With the White Sox lineup and the attack they put on us the last two nights, that was quite a performance to hold them in check.”
Stewart hit a pair of singles, scoring both times, to give Oakland a 2-0 lead. Stewart led off the game with a hit off Jon Garland (3-3), and Nick Swisher followed with a single. Two outs later, Bobby Crosby’s single scored Stewart.
Stewart singled again with one out in the fifth, took second on a wild pitch, and scored on Dan Johnson’s single.
Bocachica’s homer, a 403-shot to center, scored Kendall, who led off the seventh with a single off Garland. He hadn’t homered since Aug. 27, 2004, when he was with the Seattle Mariners. He was a last-minute addition to the lineup after Travis Buck was scratched because of a sore elbow.
“I finally got a hold of one,” Bocachica said. “I put a good swing on it and it left the park.”
It was Bocachica’s first hit of the season, after starting the year 0-for-12. He had only 44 major league at-bats in the last three years before his homer.
“Hanging slider,” Garland said. “Can’t do it to a big league hitter.”
Garland gave up four runs in 6 1-3 innings, throwing 114 pitches. He gave up 10 hits, walked one and struck out four. He had won three straight starts.
“I don’t like his outing one bit,” Garland said of Gaudin. “The guy shut us out. Yeah I tip my cap, but I thought with the way we’re swinging the bats we’d get him.”
The A’s put OF Milton Bradley on the 15-day DL, retroactive to May 15, with a strained left hamstring. … White Sox 3B Joe Crede missed his third straight game with lower back inflammation. … Erstad extended his hitting streak to 10 games, a season best. … Dye pushed his hitting streak to 11 games. … Bocachica has 14 career home runs. … A’s 3B Eric Chavez missed his second straight game with tendinitis in his triceps.