CHICAGO -- Orlando Hernandez's 17-day layoff showed. He hit four batters and squandered a four-run cushion, but still hung around long enough to get a win.
"I need a little more control," said Hernandez, who was placed on the DL May 22 -- retroactive to May 17 -- with a sore shoulder. "My shoulder is good. No pain. All season long my control has not been that good. No excuses."
Hernandez (6-1) gave up four runs and six hits in six innings, including a game-tying three-run homer to Coco Crisp in the third. Neal Cotts pitched two shutout innings of relief and Dustin Hermanson pitched the ninth for his 12th save in as many chances.
The White Sox hit six singles in the first off Jake Westbrook (2-8) for a 4-0 lead and then broke a 4-all tie with a pair of runs in the fifth as Carl Everett delivered a sacrifice fly and Jermaine Dye got his third hit, an RBI single.
"Manufacturing runs is the best way to win games," Everett said.
Chicago, with the best record in the majors at 36-18, is now 19-4 against the AL Central.
"We've played good against every team so far, but you look back and see Minnesota (3½ games) behind you and they are playing good baseball, too," Chicago manager Ozzie Guillen said.
Everett's sacrifice fly came after singles by Aaron Rowand and Paul Konerko. Dye then followed with an RBI single, shortly after a pitch from Westbrook sailed over his head.
Westbrook went seven innings, allowing six runs and 11 hits -- 10 singles. The first inning was a tough one to get through.
Scott Podsednik led off with a single, stole second and moved to third on a grounder. With the Indians playing the infield in, Rowand then hit a hard one-hopper that went by shortstop Alex Cora for an RBI single -- a key play early in the game.
"I went to my knees and tried to block it at least," Cora said. "You are expected to make that play. I didn't make it."
Why bring in the infield in the first inning?
"We haven't done much in terms of scoring runs, we have a guy (Westbrook) that can get the ball on the ground and we just don't want to give them a run," Cleveland manager Eric Wedge said.
"It was a ball hit pretty hard and it just kind of short-hopped him a little bit."
From there, the White Sox went to work.
Konerko singled to left and Everett followed with an RBI single to right. Dye hit a run-scoring single to center and after a fielder's choice, Juan Uribe popped an RBI single over first baseman Broussard's head to make it 4-0.
"I made good pitches and they found the holes and it kind of snowballed on me a little bit," Westbrook said.
"Sometimes you get balls hit right at guys and you're going to breeze through innings and sometimes they are going to find the holes."
Cleveland loaded the bases in the third after Casey Blake's ground-rule double into the right-field corner. Hernandez hit Travis Hafner, then walked Victor Martinez. Ben Broussard's RBI grounder cut Chicago's lead to 4-1, and Crisp tied the game with a three-run shot to right that hit the foul pole, his second homer in as many games.
After the game, the Indians optioned LHP Brian Tallet to Triple-A Buffalo and announced they would call up RHP Jason Davis to start Saturday's game. ... Chicago 3B Joe Crede went 0-for-3, extending his slump to 6-for-61 over his last 18 games. ... Westbrook was a 1-0 loser to the White Sox and Mark Buehrle on opening day when he allowed just four hits in a complete game. ... Podsednik stole his 28th base and had his 18th infield hit of the season. He also was picked off first in the sixth.