Indians outslugged by White Sox 15-10

Associated Press
Chicago White Sox's Carlos Quentin, right, is congratulated by Paul Konerko after Quentin hit a two run home run in the third inning in an opening day baseball game against the Cleveland Indians, Friday, April 1, 2011, in Cleveland. Konerko scored. (AP Photo/Tony Dejak)
.

View gallery

Fausto Carmona dug the hole. The Cleveland Indians fell in.

Making his first opening-day start, Carmona was rocked by Chicago for 10 runs in three innings, and the Indians fell behind by 14 before scrapping back and losing 15-10 in their home opener on Friday to the reloaded White Sox, who splurged during the offseason in an attempt to win the AL Central.

Carlos Santana went 3 for 5 and hit a two-run homer for the Indians, who scored four in the sixth, three in the seventh, two in the eighth and one in the ninth but had too much to overcome.

"We made it interesting at the end," DH Travis Hafner said. "That's the mentality of this team, to keep fighting no matter the situation. This team is going to play with energy. I was really proud of the way the guys battled back. Fausto is one of the best pitchers in the league and he'll bounce back."

Chicago built a 14-0 lead after four innings for starter Mark Buehrle (1-0) and roughed up Carmona (0-1).

Quentin and Dunn each hit two-run homers in the third, and the White Sox added eight runs in the fourth, when Indians manager Manny Acta mercifully pulled Carmona.

"Maybe I was overthrowing some pitches and I could not get them down," Carmona said. "On some, I had no movement."

The support was more than enough for Buehrle, who blanked the Indians for five innings before giving up five straight singles and four runs in the sixth. Starting his ninth consecutive opener, the left-hander allowed four runs and eight hits in six innings.

Chicago's motto this season is "All In," a poker reference that also describes their spending spree this winter when their biggest moves were signing Dunn to a four-year, $56 million contract and re-signing popular captain Paul Konerko to a three-year, $37.5 million deal.

For four innings, the reloaded White Sox looked unbeatable.

They pounded Carmona. When he was lifted by Acta in the fourth, Carmona was booed by a sellout crowd of 41,271 fans who are unsure what to expect this season from a team that lost 93 games last season.

The Indians started without center fielder Grady Sizemore, who may not be up for a few more weeks as he recovers from knee surgery.

The White Sox signed the 6-foot-6, 280-pound Dunn in December, hoping he would add more punch to an already powerful lineup.

Dunn's third-inning homer got the White Sox started and gave the slugger seven homers on opening day, tying him with Hall of Famers Ruth, Willie Mays and Eddie Mathews and one back of the major league record shared by Frank Robinson and his former Reds teammate Ken Griffey Jr.

"I don't care how I look in March," said Dunn, who struck out 27 times in 67 at-bats this spring in Arizona. "I don't care how it is in February or January. I just wanted to be ready for today, and I feel like I'm ready for the season."

Carmona didn't look prepared.

Many of his pitches were high in the strike zone, and the White Sox pounced on them.

"Fausto was up in the zone and they hit him around," Acta said. "He's a sinkerball pitcher. When the sinker is up, it gets hit. Fausto was attacking hitters, he couldn't put them away with two strikes. It's too early to make excuses. He was able to to pitch against the Yankees with bugs in his face. He's our number one guy and he just didn't have it today."

NOTES: Quentin's 5 RBIs were the most by a White Sox player since Sammy Sosa in 1991. ... The 15 runs were the most allowed by the Indians in an opener. ... Buehrle's nine straight opening-day starts is the AL's longest current streak. Hall of Famers Walter Johnson and Steve Carlton share the record with 14.

View Comments (0)