Rock bottom. That’s where the White Sox reside. Worst record in the AL Central. Worst record in the American League. Worst record in baseball. Yes, the South Side boys are pulling up the rear in baseball. The no hitter tossed by Francisco Liriano is just another symptom of what has been plaguing this Sox team since the season was 10 days old—no hitting.
I want to think the Sox have just gotten old over night, but their oldest player, Paul Konerko, is hitting .298. So what’s the problem? Have they tuned out hitting coach Greg Walker? Or is it worse than that? Is Ozzie Guillen’s message now hitting deaf ears? Give or take 2 players in the every day lineup, these are veteran hitters who know how to withstand the ups and downs of a long season.
In the spring I asked every player about starting strong. The majority said that although getting off to a good start is important, it won’t make or break a season. That is true in a sense, but falling back by so much inevitably takes a toll, mainly on a pitching staff. Right now the Sox trail Cleveland by 10.5 games, and have 15 games left to play against the Tribe. Let’s say the Sox win 8 of the 15. That would mean they would trail Cleveland by 9.5 games. Mind you, this is just my logic, but right there that is a 19 game swing. I think that whatever lead a team has, you double that, and that’s what it’s gonna take for a team to catch another. I don’t buy in to the logic that the Sox will win 9 straight, the Indians will lose 10 in a row, and they will be tied.
About that pitching staff. Jesse Crain is on pace for 65 games, and over 70 innings. Will Ohman is on pace to pitch the most he’s ever pitched in a season. There’s no book on Chris Sale, but I know how the Sox value his arm. Sale pitching every 3rd game can’t be what the Sox wanted out of this kid.
Remember last year, the Sox got off to a horrible start? They were 13-18 after 31 games. This year, they are 11-20 after the same amount of games. Sox recovered before fading in September last year. A year older, with more wear and tear on the body, can the Sox expect to make a charge again? Only time will tell, I guess.
The no hitter. You’ve heard or read everything there is to know, so I’m gonna regurgitate everything. All I will say is every fantasy owner should beware. That’s a lot of mileage on an arm that was repaired less than 2 years ago. I would expect Liriano to take a step back. All I did was guarantee another no hitter for Liriano.
I read where the phantom tag in the 9th was a bone of contention. Does anyone really think that even if Beckham makes it to first, that Morel, or any Sox hitter for that matter, was going to get a hit? They have the worst record in baseball for a reason, and one of those reasons is they don’t get hits.
Yesterday’s history, today is mystery. Can the Sox get back in the win column, or the hit column for that matter?
I understand John Danks wanted to put a little pressure on his guys, to see if he could get them out of their slump. He walked Denard Span leading off he game. Jason Kubel eventually singled him home. Sox down 1-0 before the game was 5 minutes old.
Danks’ ploy worked. Bottom of the inning, Juan Pierre leads off with a single. The no hitter is over!! However, showing that the slump is still in full effect, Pierre got picked off.
It only gets better. Top 2nd, Danny Valencia smokes a ball down the line in left. The ball gets wedged under the padding next to the stands. Pierre waves to the umpire saying he can’t get the ball. The ump says the ball is in play. Pierre gets charged with his 8th error of the season. Fortunately, Valencia gets stranded at 3rd. The ball really did get wedged!
Bottom 2nd, can it stop! Sox threatening to break the game open. Carlos Quentin on 1st. With the way the Sox have been hitting, even a man on 1st constitutes a big inning. Anyhow, AJ Pierzynski lines out to SS Matt Tolbert, who doubles off Quentin.
I’m not sure if he is using “Wonderboy”, but Alex Rios has found his power stroke. Rios hit his 3rd home run in the past 5 games today.
Things went from bad to worse in the 6th inning. Tolbert tried to give himself up, with the sac bunt. Only one problem, the Sox didn’t cover 1st base. Tolbert now safe at 1st, and Span at 2nd, both would score later in the inning. The maddening thing, if the Sox field that bunt, the game remains tied at 1. Hawk Harrelson said it best, “The Sox can’t get out of their own way”.
Sox lose again, 3-2