White Sox starter Mark Buehrle wasn't afraid to show his emotions after giving up three consecutive hits in the eighth inning of Wednesday night's game.
After seeing manager Jerry Manual approach the mound to remove him from the game, Buehrle fired a baseball into the ground.
"I wasn't mad that I was coming out," he said. "I was mad that we played a good game all around and I gave up three base hits to give them the lead."
After pushing across a run in the eighth, the Angels held on for a 2-1 victory over the Sox.
The South Siders lost ground to the Royals, who beat the Yankees 11-0 to extend their lead in the American League Central to 1½ games.
The Sox displayed some of their finest defense of the season Wednesday. They threw three runners out at home plate, including one in the eighth.
Aaron Rowand made the most of his start in center field.
He robbed Bengie Molina of a home run with a leaping catch in the second. Later in the inning he nailed Scott Spiezio at the plate on a single by Shawn Wooten.
Rowand also went 1-for-3, scoring the Sox's only run.
How does he stay sharp while spending so many games on the bench?
"I work on stuff in [batting practice]," he said. "That's really all you can do."
Manuel was asked if Rowand could be in line for more playing time, perhaps by using Carl Everett as the team's designated hitter.
"That's a possibility because [Rowand] gives us a nice presence," Manuel said of Rowand. "Only thing, he seems to struggle against right-handed pitchers."
Rowand is hitting .261 against right-handers this season.
The Sox were helpless for most of the game against Angels lefty Jarrod Washburn. They managed just four hits off him in 6 2/3 innings.
Buehrle, who was 8-1 in his last 11 starts, took a 1-0 lead into the fifth. That's when Anaheim tied it on Adam Kennedy's RBI single.
If the Sox had any intentions of removing Buehrle before the eighth, the 24-year-old lefty changed their minds.
Manuel said that Buehrle "vehemently" lobbied pitching coach Don Cooper to keep him in the game.
"He wanted to be on the mound if anything happened," Manuel said. "He wanted the game badly."
Rookie shortstop Alfredo Amezaga led off the eighth with a bunt down the third-base line. Joe Crede fielded it cleanly but double-clutched before throwing late to first.
Garret Anderson lined a single to right, advancing Amezaga to third.
With Tim Salmon coming to the plate, Manuel wanted to bring in Tom Gordon. But the right-hander wasn't ready.
So Buehrle delivered a first-pitch sinker that Salmon lined into right-center field, driving home Amezaga.
"Early on they weren't swinging at the first pitch," Buehrle said. "They came out swinging that inning."
After spiking the ball, Buehrle threw his glove against the dugout wall before clearing out a towel from the bench. Buehrle then sat with his head in hands until first-base coach Rafael Santana consoled him with a friendly tap on his head.
"Just a frustrating loss," Buehrle said.Copyright © 2015, Los Angeles Times