DETROIT (AP) — Tarik Skubal pitched five scoreless innings and the Detroit Tigers held on for a 3-1 victory over the Chicago White Sox on Saturday night.
Matt Vierling homered and scored twice for Detroit.
“I thought we had a lot of guys who did a good job,” Tigers manager A.J. Hinch said. “There were a few minor things we could have done better, but this was a nice win.”
Skubal (5-3) allowed two hits while striking out nine. It was his second win over the White Sox in six days, having held them to two runs on seven hits Sunday.
“I thought I had too many uncompetitive misses tonight,” he said. “My fastball was better tonight than the last time, and nine Ks are great, but I need to get them in seven innings, not five.”
Alex Lange got four outs for his 22nd save.
Jose Ureña (0-5) made his Chicago debut, permitting one run and four hits in four innings.
“I have been working on my pitches in the minors, and I’ve always trusted my stuff,” said Ureña, who signed a minor league deal with Chicago after being released by the Rockies. “I knew I could pitch here if I got the chance.”
The White Sox struck out 15 times.
Chicago had two on with none out in the first, but Skubal struck out Luis Robert Jr. and Yoán Moncada on his way to escaping the inning.
The Tigers left runners on second and third in their half of the first, but took the lead in the second. With one out, Jake Rogers singled, went to second on Zack Short’s walk, moved to third on Akil Baddoo’s groundout and scored on Zach McKinstry’s single.
That was the only run until White Sox reliever Luis Patiño ran into trouble in the sixth. He allowed a leadoff single to Vierling, then walked Tyler Nevin and Rogers to load the bases with one out.
Short drew the third walk of the inning, forcing home Vierling. Patiño recovered to strike out Baddoo and retire Andy Ibañez, keeping the score 2-0.
Vierling made it 3-0 with a seventh-inning homer off Michael Kopech.
Yasmani Grandal led off the White Sox eighth with a pinch-hit double against Jason Foley and scored on Robert’s two-out single. An error by Short at shortstop put the potential tying runs on base, but Lange came out of the bullpen to retire Moncada.
“We just never got much going other than the last inning,” Chicago manager Pedro Grifol said. “They held us in check all night.”
Nevin was on base four times without a hit. He grounded into a force play in the first, was hit by a pitch in the fourth, then walked in the sixth and seventh.
COMING OUT OF THE ‘PEN
Kopech made his first relief appearance since 2021, retiring his first two batters before Vierling’s homer. He had walked 22 hitters in his last 18 innings, allowing 19 runs. Kopech walked five while only getting five outs against the Tigers on Sunday. He is expected to remain in the bullpen for the rest of the season.
“I thought he was explosive,” Grifol said. “I liked the way the ball was coming out of his hand. He just hung the one pitch.”
RHP Sawyer Gipson-Long will make his major league debut for the Tigers on Sunday, pitching against Jesse Scholtens (1-7, 4.38 ERA) and the White Sox.