It was the first loss at Packard Stadium for ASU this season and it snapped ASU's five game winning streak against UA (27-9).
ASU (31-4) was without star second baseman Zack MacPhee for the second time in three games due to an illness. Freshman Deven Marrero started in his place.
"[Workman] pitched really well. I thought he commanded the zone. Normally in a Tuesday game, after playing in the Pac-10 on a weekend, you usually don't see a 4-2 ball game," ASU head coach Tim Esmay said. "Credit both sides; I thought both sides played a well-rounded defensive game."
The Sun Devils jumped out to an early 2-0 lead in the second inning. Johnny Ruettiger legged out an infield single with one out in the inning and UA left fielder Bobby Brown lost a fly ball off the bat from Matt Newman in the evening sky, letting Newman reach with a double.
Raoul Torrez followed with a double off the base of the right field wall that scored Ruettiger and Newman.
While Workman threw a good game, ASU freshman starter Brady Rodgers did, as well.
He held the Wildcats scoreless for the first three innings, before running into a bump in the road in the fourth inning.
After getting ahead of Rafael Valenzuela 1-2, Rodgers hit him with a pitch to put the leadoff hitter on. After a fly out, Rodgers walked Steve Selsky and Robert Refsnyder made it 2-1 with a base hit to right that scored Valenzuela and sent Selsky to third.
Seth Mejias-Brean tied the game at 2-2 with a sacrifice fly, but the big blow came from Bobby Brown. He sent a long drive to deep center that fell just out of the reach of Ruettiger and Refsnyder scored to put UA up 3-2.
Workman set down the final 12 batters he faced, before leaving after 6 1/3 innings.
"He was pitching to what the umpire was giving him," said Raoul Torrez. "The umpire was giving him a good zone, a good amount of plate out, and he kept pounding away, pounding away. He pitched really well."
Rodgers also settled in and worked out of a few jams to keep the score at 3-2.
UA eventually did add an insurance run against reliever Mitchell Lambson in the eighth, thanks to a disputed balk call. After walking, Jett Bandy moved up to second on a balk call that Esmay argued to no avail.
That allowed Bandy to move into scoring position and it ended up being a big call when Refsnyder singled allowing him to score.
The Sun Devils threatened to break through against UA reliever Bryce Bandilla in the eighth, but couldn't come through with a clutch hit.
Austin Barnes led off with a single into right, but Drew Maggi followed with his third strikeout of the game, swinging at what would have been ball four.
Marrero then placed a beautiful bunt single down the third base line and Kole Calhoun followed with a base hit to load the bases.
Bandilla then got into a battle with cleanup hitter Riccio Torrez and eventually got Torrez to hit a lazy fly ball to left that was too shallow to allow a run to score. The threat ended when Zach Wilson grounded out weakly to first.
Any chance of a rally in the ninth was stymied by a pair of outstanding defensive plays by UA shortstop Alex Mejia.