Richard Dotson of the Chicago White Sox has made a complete recovery from health problems that plagued him the past two seasons.
"This year, in my 17 starts, I've gotten into the eighth inning in most of them. This is my best pitching since 1984," Dotson said after shutting out the Cleveland Indians on three hits over the first eight innings before settling for a 3-2 victory.
The victory was the fifth in six games for the White Sox, who are in last place in the AL West with a 30-47 record -- third-worst in the major leagues.
For the game, Dotson (6-5) allowed five hits in 8 2/3 innings. Bob James cut short a Cleveland rally in the ninth for his ninth save.
Dotson won a total of 36 games in 1983 and 1984 before being sidelined by a freak physical ailment.
"I have an overly developed upper chest muscle which cut off the circulation to my arm and in turn caused my arm and shoulder muscles to atrophy," Dotson said. "My arm would be dead tired, my shoulder numb and my elbow kept blowing out."
Dotson had the muscle removed in July 1985 and missed the rest of that season. Last year, he compiled a 10-17 record while trying to regain his arm strength.
The right-handeder has come back this season with a 4.05 earned run average and victories in five of his last six decisions.
"My arm feels better now and I'm concentrating better because things are not on my mind as much concerning how healthy my arm is," Dotson said.
Cleveland's Joe Carter said Dotson took advantage of home plate umpire Drew Coble, who according to Carter was "giving him the outside corner all day."
"When you widen the strike zone," Carter added, "he's going to be tough."
Jerry Hairston broke a scoreless tie with a double that scored two of the White Sox three runs in the seventh inning.
With one out in the ninth, Dotson, who struck out four and walked four, walked Tony Bernazard. Bernazard went to third on a single by Julio Franco and scored on a groundout. When Pat Tabler singled, putting the tying runs on base, Bryan Clark relieved Dotson.
Clark promptly surrendered a run-scoring double to pinch-hitter Carmen Castillo, with pinch runner Junior Noboa stopping at third. That brought on James, who got Brook Jacoby to ground out to shortstop.
Scott Bailes, making his first start since May 2, fell to 2-2 with the defeat, Cleveland's 12th in its last 14 games. Bailes struck out six and walked none. He allowed only two singles in the first six innings.
With one out in the seventh, Harold Baines got an infield hit and went to second when Ivan Calderon singled. Hairston then bounced his double inside the third base bag, clearing the bases and knocking out Bailes. After an out, Ken Williams singled off Mark Huisman to score Hairston.