CHICAGO — Joba Chamberlain felt good, and early on everything seemed to be falling into place.
But after the Detroit Tigers relief pitcher retired the first two hitters in the eighth inning Wednesday night, everything fell apart.
Chamberlain gave up six straight hits and Melky Cabrera hit a tying homer and drove in four runs as the White Sox scored four times in the eighth to rally past the Tigers 7-6.
For Chamberlain, the loss was tough to take, especially given the way the inning started.
"I felt really good," Chamberlain said. "Sometimes, those are the frustrating ones when you feel really good and (the White Sox) did a good job of hitting it, and you can't take anything away from them."
The Tigers led 6-3 entering the eighth and Brad Ausmus thought everything was lining up for a win one night after a 5-2 White Sox victory snapped a five-game losing streak.
But after Chamberlain recorded two straight outs, the White Sox strung together the six hits, capped by Avisail Garcia's two-out single that drove in the go-ahead run off Chamberlain (0-1).
Asked what he saw, the Tigers manager kept it simple.
I'm not going to dissect it at this point," Ausmus said. "But obviously that was the key to the game."
The six hits included Cabrera's home run — Chicago's second of the night after the White Sox had gone nine games without a long ball.
"I feel very good because I can hit the home run to tie the game in that situation," Cabrera said.
Victor Martinez homered and knocked in four runs for the Tigers. Chicago trailed 6-3 after Martinez drove in his fourth run of the night with a single.
The White Sox kept grinding, though, playing from behind all night. The Tigers had a chance to get out of the eighth, but Adam Eaton lined a shot off Detroit third baseman Nick Castellanos' glove that extended the inning and allowed the White Sox to rally.
"It was a hard-hit line drive but catchable," Castellanos said. "I should have caught it. If I catch that line drive, we're out of there with a three-run lead."
ROAD TO RODON
The Chicago White Sox will give top prospect Carlos Rodon his first major-league start Saturday against the Cincinnati Reds. With Jeff Samardzija serving his five-game suspension, Chicago needed somebody to face Cincinnati.
That chance is going to Rodon, who has a 2.84 ERA in three relief appearances.
"It should be fun. We'll see how it goes," Rodon said. "You've just got to be prepared for anything honestly."
Tigers pitcher Justin Verlander made 50 throws in the outfield at U.S. Cellular Field on Wednesday after being cleared by doctors to throw. Verlander has been sidelined since the start of the year with a strained right triceps. Ausmus said Wednesday there was no set timetable for Verlander's return.
"This is a first step," Ausmus said, adding that Verlander would be able to throw and play catch on a daily or every-other-day basis.
Tigers: SS Jose Iglesias returned after leaving Sunday's game against Kansas City with tightness in his left groin. Iglesias was scheduled to return Tuesday, but was a late scratch.
White Sox: Relief pitcher Nate Jones will remain in Chicago through the weekend so the White Sox can determine the next steps in his rehabilitation. Jones had Tommy John surgery last June and has been at extended spring training. Jones, on the 60-day disabled list, said the message from manager Robin Ventura and pitching coach Don Cooper is to remain patient and focus on getting through each day healthy.
Quintana allowed nine earned runs and 10 hits in four innings during his last outing against the Tigers on April 19.
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