Michael Kopech pitches 6 hitless innings and strikes out a career-high 11 in the Chicago White Sox's 2-0 win over the Detroit Tigers.

Michael Kopech defended another tackle.

The Chicago White Sox starter hadn’t allowed a hit and struck out 11 in six stellar innings Friday against the Detroit Tigers at Guaranteed Rate Field.

He didn’t get his wish. The Sox turned to Reynaldo López for the seventh.

“I thought I had a pretty decent shot, but they didn’t want that to happen,” Kopech said. “I’m at a point in the season where I’ve thrown a lot more innings than I did last year, so they want to rest and make sure I’m healthy here next time.”

The team’s no-hitter bid ended when Javier Báez led off the seventh inning with a single to right-center field.

The Sox didn’t get the no-no, but they did get a win. Andrew Vaughn broke a scoreless tie with a two-out, two-run single in the seventh, and the bullpen held the Tigers off the scoreboard for a 2-0 win.

“That’s as far as he should have gone,” manager Tony La Russa said of Kopech. “But if you think I’m old school, I’m actually new school. It would change the definition of a win. If we win the game, he has to get the win.

“I knew where he was. I knew she wouldn’t be popular, but I don’t want to regret it.”

Kopech, who left after 85 pitches, said he understood the decision.

“Eighty-five pitches in the sixth isn’t going to get me through the ninth inning,” Kopech said. “What they were saying was, ‘What’s the difference between sixth and seventh if you’re not going to go to nine?’ And I understand.

“I would have liked to have gone deeper, but the bullpen came in and did their job, we put in some runs and we won the game and that’s what matters.”

The Sox opened a seven-game home series on a positive note, but had to complete the contest without Luis Robert. The center fielder came out with a sprained left wrist after sliding headfirst while attempting to steal second base in the sixth inning.

X-rays were negative and Robert is day to day, the Red Sox said.

The Red Sox on Thursday wasted another strong outing from Dylan Cease against the Royals in Kansas City, Mo. They made sure not to do the same Friday with Kopech on the mound.

Although the right-hander did not take the decision into account, he was fantastic.

“I feel like that was the definition of dominant,” Vaughn said of Kopech. “That was incredible. Watching him throw from the outfield, I could see the ball moving from there. Special.”

Kopech reached double-digit strikeouts for the second time in his career, with the first occurring on April 25, 2021, when he struck out 10 against the Texas Rangers.

Kopech struck out the team on the second Friday and added another to start the third.

“I felt like I could get into a rhythm by the second or third inning,” he said. “Things were going well, and overall I was feeling pretty good.”

Kopech struck out two of three batters in the fourth. After walking the leadoff batter in the fifth, Kopech struck out the next three.

He struck out two more while retiring the side in order in the sixth.

“He wanted to come back because he really had a good command of his fastball,” La Russa said. “But you look for more when you are tired and you reach that limit, bad things happen. Very difficult. I felt it was the right thing to do. It was my decision. (Pitching coach) Ethan (Katz) felt the same way, if that helps.”

Kopech lowered his ERA to 3.18.

Friday was the 21st start of the season for Kopech, who returned to the rotation after spending most of last season in relief. He missed 2019 recovering from Tommy John surgery and opted out of the pandemic-shortened 2020 season for personal reasons.

The Sox planned to track his innings throughout the season and he said communication has been good.

“There are times when you worry about whether your stuff will carry over from the bullpen to the starting rotation,” Kopech said. “Obviously some things have been different from last year. The speed has not increased. Strikeout numbers haven’t gone up. Both were up a tick (Friday).

“The fact that it worked, that I had decent success on location this year, makes me feel good about moving on. The goal is always to give the team a chance to win, but on a personal level I want to be able to do this for as long as I can.”

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