Newcomer Feldman leads Orioles to 4-2 win over White Sox

Brian Hedger, The SportsXchange
The SportsXchange

CHICAGO -- Scott Feldman gave the Baltimore Orioles exactly what they were looking for on Wednesday night at U.S. Cellular Field, a day after they made a deal with the Chicago Cubs to acquire him.
The veteran right-hander didn't pick up a victory but threw six solid innings to keep his team close in Baltimore's 4-2 win against the Chicago White Sox. Chris Davis and the Orioles' bullpen did the rest to make sure the Orioles have a chance to win this three-game series in the finale on Thursday afternoon.
"It was exciting," said Feldman, who was on a West coast road trip with the Cubs when the deal was completed. "(Tuesday) night I had a tough time falling asleep. I was up until about four in the morning,
just excited to get here and put on a new uniform and play with some new teammates. I was maybe a little too overhyped (early) but I felt fine the whole time. I think as the game went on, though, my command got a little better."
Davis, meanwhile, continued his standout season -- both at the plate and in the field. Aside from making a couple of nice plays at first base defensively, he went 2-for-4 with three RBIs. He lofted his
32nd homer of the season to the opposite field to lead off the fourth inning and then drove in two more in the eighth with a double down the right-field line to put the Orioles up 4-2, lacing the first pitch he saw from left-handed Sox reliever Matt Thornton.
"You can sit there and go 'left on left' (with Thornton) but he's swinging the bat," White Sox manager Robin Ventura said. "You can look at the numbers and (he's) driving in runs, big runs for them. I don't
know if the pitch that Matty threw was all that bad. It wasn't one of those that was just hanging there. He just got the barrel on it and kept it fair."
Darren O'Day, Tommy Hunter and Jim Johnson combined to shut the Sox down after Feldman left and converted the win for O'Day (4-0). Johnson pitched a scoreless ninth, despite allowing a pair of singles, for his 29th save.
Feldman, however, was the main story for the Orioles (48-37) -- who trail the Boston Red Sox by 3.5 games in the American League East. Despite a rough first inning, the newest member of Baltimore's
starting rotation wiggled out of it with only one run allowed and settled down over the next five frames. He left the game after six innings with the score tied at 2 after striking out six, walking none
and allowing six hits.
"That's Scott," Orioles manager Buck Showalter said. "He got his feet on the ground a little bit. He's had a whirlwind last two days. We just didn't want him to sit around seven or eight days between starts. You saw a guy with six days' rest. (He lost) his command a little early but you could see it in his eyes that he got a little more confident as the game went on."
The same could be said for Hector Santiago, who started for Chicago and gutted out seven solid innings after a shaky first. He struck out nine, walked two and gave up five hits before giving way to the bullpen after a season-high 123 pitches, with the game still knotted at 2.
"I went out there with a different gameplan than I usually do," Santiago said. "I just tried to make too good of pitches and just fell behind and then tried to come back and change what I was doing. I tried to put a little more on it and go over the middle of the plate and they just started pulling some (balls). After I walked the leadoff guy in the second inning, I was like 'Okay, here, see how far you can hit it and try to hit it out of the park,' and I just kind of fell into a groove out there."
Gordon Beckham hit his first home run of the season to lead off the fifth and tie it up at 2 and he went 2-for-4 to lead Chicago offensively. Adam Dunn drove in the Sox's other run with a double in the first.
NOTES: The White Sox placed 1B/DH Paul Konerko (lower back strain) and RHP Jesse Crain (right shoulder strain) on the 15-day Disabled List on Wednesday and recalled 3B Brent Morel and LHP David Purcey from Triple-A Charlotte to take their roster spots. Konerko missed six straight games with lower back soreness prior to playing in Chicago's 5-2 victory on Tuesday night, but said the back worsened with each inning that passed. Crain, who's been the Sox's most effective reliever and was mentioned as a possible All-Star candidate; he felt some discomfort prior to Tuesday's game. The soreness didn't improve as he warmed up in the bullpen in the late innings and Crain had an MRI, which showed the strain. Both are expected to return after the All-Star break. ... Chicago Blackhawks players Patrick Sharp and Brandon Bollig brought the Stanley Cup to U.S. Cellular Field and both threw out ceremonial first pitches before the game. ... Alex Rios' stolen base in the first inning was the 200th of his career. ... Baltimore got some good news on Tuesday about Jonathan Schoop, the Orioles' top position player prospect. Schoop, who's been resting since late May with a stress fracture in his lower back, can begin playing minor league games again on July 11. He will start at either short-season Aberdeen or with Baltimore's Gulf Coast League team. ... The Orioles optioned INF Danny Valencia to Triple-A Norfolk to make room on the 25-man roster for Scott Feldman, who was acquired in a trade with the Cubs on Tuesday.

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