The left-hander did that, and more.
A modest crowd watched the opener at Camden Yards. The doubleheader was scheduled after games on April 27-28 were postponed because of riots near the ballpark following the funeral of a black man who died of injuries sustained while in police custody. The third game of that series was played without fans in the stadium.
Sale (4-2) gave up four singles, walked none and permitted only one runner past first base. He was pulled in the eighth after striking out Caleb Joseph and Everth Cabrera to raise his pitch count to 120.
"My main objective today was to fill in innings and get as deep as I could into the ballgame," Sale said. "You get a doubleheader, you want to get as far in there as you can in the first one."
Sale did just that, sparing a bullpen that had a 7.20 ERA and two blown saves in its previous four games.
His pitch count was over 100 after seven innings, but Sale hadn't had enough.
"He said he wanted to go back out there," manager Robin Ventura said. "Playing a doubleheader, him wanting to go out there was good."
Although Sale failed to go eight innings for the first time in four starts, he's 2-0 with a 1.71 ERA over 31 2/3 innings during that span.
The 12 strikeouts were a season high for Sale. He owns the franchise record for career games with at least 10 strikeouts (21) and 12-plus strikeouts (11).
Making his first major league start following two appearances as a reliever this month, Tyler Wilson (1-1) matched zeros with Sale until the sixth.
"The biggest takeaway obviously is walking that leadoff guy in the sixth inning. Can't happen," Wilson said. "They executed a hit-and-run well on a changeup and then LaRoche hit a 2-0 changeup."
Wilson allowed two runs, five hits and a walk in six innings. The 25-year-old was recalled from Triple-A Norfolk as the 26th man for the doubleheader.
"Gave us a chance to win," manager Buck Showalter said. "Just matched up against one of the best pitchers in baseball. Sale had everything going today."
Tyler Flowers added a run-scoring grounder in the ninth.
Duke struck out Manny Machado on a check-swing to end the eighth, with Machado getting ejected for arguing the call. Duke added two more strikeouts in the ninth before Delmon Young singled and Davis connected.