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Confidence key as Crain breaks White Sox mark

Confidence key as Crain breaks White Sox mark

MINNEAPOLIS -- After two days off Tuesday and Wednesday, White Sox reliever Jesse Crain threw his franchise-record 28th straight scoreless outing Thursday against his former team at Target Field.

The right-hander entered the game as the White Sox trailed the Twins, 8-4, but he kept them from adding on. Crain faced only three batters and gave up a base hit to start the seventh inning, but he retired the next two batters on a strikeout -- and double play to first -- and a flyout to left field.

"I just go out there and I take it day by day, pitch by pitch," Crain said. "I feel like you get better every year, you learn something. I'm trying to put everything together this year. So far, it's worked out.

Crain brought his already impressive ERA down from 0.57 to 0.55. Through 32 2/3 innings this season, he has given up only two runs on 23 hits, while striking out 43.

White Sox manager Robin Ventura noted that Crain is just as solid as last year, but there's a little more control and a little more confidence to the reliever this season.

"A lot of it looks the same," Ventura said. "I don't know exactly [where] to pinpoint it, but he's just been spot on as far as control. He throws anything in any count. I think that the confidence to be able to do that deep in a count with guys on, without guys on -- the control has just been there with every pitch."

Kelly Erickson is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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