After a rain delay of 2 hours, 4 minutes, Garcia needed barely more time than that to beat the Detroit Tigers 6-1 Thursday, pitching a five-hitter for his first complete game of the season. The game sped by in just 2:08.
"Awesome," Chicago manager Ozzie Guillen said as his team prepared to head for Oakland. "Freddy did a tremendous job and saved the bullpen for the next couple days."
The Tigers lost their fourth in a row. The White Sox completed their first sweep in Detroit since 2002 and improved to 7-1 against the Tigers this season.
"This is tough, because we feel like we are the better team," Craig Monroe said. "But being the best team on paper doesn't mean anything. They came in here and did everything they needed to do, and that's hard to accept."
Chicago is 16 games ahead of the fourth-place Tigers in the AL Central.
"Hopefully, we continue to build on what we did in the last three months," Guillen said.
Garcia (8-3) improved to 5-0 in his last eight starts. The only run he gave up was unearned, and he struck out eight in his first complete game since beating San Diego in his final start for Seattle on June 25 last year. He was traded to the White Sox two days later.
"I had a good fastball, and I threw it for strikes when I needed it," Garcia said. "In the first three innings, I threw some bad pitches, but I didn't lose my concentration."
"I made two bad pitches," he said. "Without those pitches, it is a different game."
Garcia did a good job of avoiding early trouble, escaping a second-and-third jam in the first inning by striking out Rondell White and Monroe.
Vance Wilson put Detroit ahead 1-0 in the second with an RBI single -- just his fourth hit in 38 at-bats -- but Garcia got out of another second-and-third, one-out situation with a strikeout and a grounder. He didn't allow another runner until Monroe's two-out single in the sixth.
"Give that guy credit," Monroe said. "He's got one of the best sliders in the game -- it is coming at you 94 miles an hour straight down."
Maroth didn't allow a hit until the fifth, when Jermaine Dye drew a leadoff walk and Aaron Rowand singled. Chris Widger bunted into a forceout at third base, but Crede followed with a three-run homer into the left-field bullpen.
"He kind of left a curveball over the plate and I was able to hit it hard," Crede said. "This has been fun. I can't recall any time I've had this much fun on a team."
In the fifth, Paul Konerko singled with one out and Everett hit his 12th homer, a drive over the bullpen.
Chicago added a run on Dye's RBI double in the eighth.
"I certainly see why this team is in first place," Tigers manager Alan Trammell said. "They play the right way."
- Crede has hit just two of 11 homers off left-handers.
- The White Sox placed LHP Damaso Marte (inflamed muscle on the left side of his upper back) on the 15-day DL and recalled LHP Kevin Walker from Triple-A Charlotte.
- The temperature at noon was in the low-90s, but dropped 20 degrees after the heavy rain that delayed the start.
- Garcia is 13-1 with a 2.40 ERA in his last 18 afternoon starts.
- Chicago claimed LHP Ryan Wing off waivers from Texas and optioned him to Class A Winston-Salem. Wing, 23, was 2-5 with a 7.01 ERA in 12 games with Class A Bakersfield this season.