CHICAGO — Jake Peavy struck out the first two batters of the game Friday in the home opener for the Chicago White Sox. He then waited nearly 10 minutes before throwing his next pitch against the defending AL Central champion Detroit Tigers.
Detroit star Miguel Cabrera pointed out to umpires that the batter's box was not lined up properly. So the original lines were wiped out and a plate was brought in from center field to put in some new ones.
"It wasn't a big deal," Peavy said.
Peavy took a one-hit shutout into the seventh, survived a two-run homer from Delmon Young and the White Sox beat the Tigers 5-2 Friday in Robin Ventura's home debut as manager.
"I couldn't tell you how many people were here today. You have to get to that place where it's you and (catcher) A.J. (Pierzynski)," Peavy said.
"The focus and concentration level will take your game to another level. That's what the game is, channeling the emotion and adrenaline you have, but at the same time realizing the situation what the count is and that thought process. "
Detroit manager Jim Leyland agreed that the rare re-do of the batter's box wasn't significant.
"It was up too far. It was all right, but it was just up too far, so they had to move the line back," Leyland said.
"The batter's box was fine but they had moved it up too far, it wasn't in line with the plate the way it was set up, so they just changed it. No big deal."
Cabrera declined to discuss the batter's box incident that he started.
"I don't want to talk about that. We lost," he said.
Chicago won, thanks to a couple of stellar defensive plays.
Dayan Viciedo, who made the switch to left field this spring, homered and had a key diving catch and shortstop Alexei Ramirez made a nice stop and flip to start a double play that ended another Detroit rally.
With the White Sox ahead 3-0, Peavy walked Cabrera and Young's two-out, two-run homer finished him in the seventh.
Alex Avila singled off reliever Will Ohman and Jhonny Peralta followed with a double against Addison Reed before Viciedo made a diving catch of Andy Dirks' sinking liner to finish the inning.
In the eighth, Ramirez made a nice stop on Cabrera's grounder and shoveled to second, starting an inning-ending double play after the Tigers had runners at first and third.
"These guys were awesome today. The play from Alexei and the play from Dayan saved the game ultimately," Peavy said.
Viciedo hit his first homer with two outs in the fifth to break up a scoreless duel between Peavy and Max Scherzer (0-1). Paul Konerko had an RBI single with two outs in the sixth and then just barely beat the throw home to score on A.J. Pierzynski's triple into the right-field corner, making it 3-0.
Brent Morel hit an RBI single for Chicago in the eighth after Young misplayed Alejandro De Aza's fly ball into a triple. Morel eventually scored on a wild pitch by Brayan Villarreal.
Hector Santiago pitched the ninth for his third save in as many chances.
Peavy, whose stint with Chicago has been since slowed by injuries since coming to the White Sox in a trade with San Diego late in the 2009 season, allowed only two hits. He struck out eight and walked one in 6 2-3 innings.
"He has that ace presence on the mound. And I think inside our clubhouse, he does, too," Ventura said.
"He no longer has, maybe, the 97 (mph fastball), but as far as location he's stretching it back and forth now, instead of just raring back and throwing it. He's becoming more comfortable being a pitcher and spotting it, taking a little off here and there. He still knows how to pitch."
Peavy retired the first 10 batters before Brennan Boesch singled sharply to right with one in the fourth.
Scherzer (0-1), who gave up eight hits and seven runs in just 2 2-3 innings in his first start this season against the Red Sox, was much more effective in his second outing.
Scherzer struck out 11, walked one and allowed five hits and three runs in six innings.Comment on this story
NOTES: The teams combined to strike out 25 times — 15 by White Sox batters, including four by Adam Dunn. ... Ventura became the sixth straight White Sox manager to win his debut at U.S. Cellular Field. He and Konerko got loud ovations during introductions. ... The announced sellout crowd was 38,676. ... Tigers INF Brandon Inge could rejoin the club Saturday after an injury rehab (groin) rehab for Triple-A Toledo. ... Adam Wilk (0-0) goes for Detroit on Saturday against Gavin Floyd (0-1). ...... Former major league pitcher Kevin Hickey, who was a batting practice pitcher and pregame instructor with the White Sox, remains hospitalized in Texas undergoing tests. He was taken to the hospital the day before the White Sox's season opener against the Rangers on April 6.