Jake Peavy returns to White Sox, earns win vs. Cubs

CHICAGO -- White Sox batterymates A.J. Pierzynski and Jake Peavy insisted everything was fine Wednesday night after a 4-3 victory over the Cubs. Both downplayed an exchange of words they had after Peavy was pulled in the sixth inning.

It may have been boys being boys, but it came between two emotional and very competitive teammates.

"We're fine. I love Jake Peavy. He's a great competitor and in the heat of the moment things happen and it wasn't a big deal," said Pierzynski, who had a two-run triple to spark the win.

When Peavy was pulled with one out in the sixth after the Cubs had scored twice to pull within a run, he appeared to point toward the mound where Pierzynski and some teammates were standing. They exchanged words in the dugout when the half inning ended and headed into the dugout tunnel.

Pierzynski joked that he and Peavy were talking about college football. Peavy said they were discussing who is the better hunter.

"It happens a ton and I hate that the camera saw a little bit of it. It was nothing but us talking about how we're going to get better," Peavy said. "A.J. won a game for us. ... We just sat down and had some dinner together."

Peavy, activated from the disabled list before the game, said he didn't pitch well and that's why he was upset as he left the mound.

"I had a tough time coming off. I had a tough time swallowing the way my start went. Boys will be boys. Going to say stuff to each other at times that might not sit well with the other," Peavy said. He said he has no beef with Pierzynski and expects him to be his catcher in his next start.

"We're just competing. That's going to happen from time to time. We're both very passionate people," Peavy said.

Peavy (3-1), who had been sidelined by a groin strain, went 5 1/3 innings, giving up seven hits. He was driven out in the sixth when he gave up Carlos Pena's 14th homer and three straight singles to make it a one-run game.

Reliever Chris Sale struck out Koyie Hill before Kosuke Fukudome lined a ball off his glove for a single loading the bases. But the 22-year-old Sale got 21-year-old Starlin Castro on a grounder to third to end the inning.

Jesse Crain and Matt Thornton notched key strikeouts and Sergio Santos pitched the ninth with two strikeouts for his 14th save in 16 chances.

"Every guy who has come in has done their job," Pierzysnki said.

Pierzynski drove a two-run triple into right center in the fourth following consecutive singles by Alexei Ramirez and Alex Rios. Moments later Pierzynski broke for the plate and scored on Brent Lillibridge's squeeze bunt single, giving the White Sox a 3-0 lead against Doug Davis.

Davis (1-6), who beat the Yankees last week for his first win, allowed eight hits and four runs -- three earned -- in five innings.

"I thought I threw the ball decent. We played hard and gave ourselves a chance to win," Davis said. "We were one swing away pretty much the whole game. One play away, it's bound to go the other way one of these times, so keep the games close, that's all you can do."

Castro singled home Fukudome, who had hit a two-out double, to pull the Cubs within 3-1 in the fifth.

The White Sox loaded the base with two outs in the fifth on a walk, a single by Rios and an error on Cubs second baseman Blake DeWitt before Davis plunked Lillibridge with a 1-2 pitch, forcing in the White Sox's fourth run.

Pena homered for the third straight game to cut it to 4-2 in the sixth -- his fifth homer in the past seven games. One out later, Alfonso Soriano, DeWitt and Jeff Baker singled consecutively to make it 4-3 and drive out Peavy.

The Cubs, who left 10 men on base, threatened again in the eighth but with a runner at third and one out, Crain struck out Hill before Thornton fanned Fukudome to end the inning.

Chicago's Paul Konerko, who had homered in five straight games, went 0-for-3 with an intentional walk.

Game notes
Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau threw out the first pitch. New mayor Rahm Emanuel attended the game. ... Slumping White Sox DH Adam Dunn, batting .175 with 91 strikeouts this season and the target of loud booing, was held out of the lineup against the lefty Davis. ... Castro had a walk and two more hits and finished the three-game series 6-for-12. ... Soriano had his first stolen base of the season in the fourth. ... The teams play three more games July 1-3 at Wrigley Field. ... Attendance was 35,403.