Looking at the just past home-stand Sox fans had to think that they would clean up. Toronto is a up and coming club, but Seattle and Houston are already playing for next year.
Unfortunately, 9 games played, but only 4 wins for the South Siders. They did take 2 of 3 from the M’s, which was good. Not an embarrassment to lose 2 of 3 to the Jays. Losing 2 of 3 to the Astros was sad.
If you look at the offense this weekend, you wouldn’t think they lost even one game. 7 of the 9 players in the Sox lineup combined to hit .375 in the 3 days, with 3 home runs and 22 RBI. Only Viciedo and Pierzynski had rough weekends.
The pitching was another story. Forget Chris Sale, who is pitching at a completely different level. Lets gab about Gavin Floyd and Phil Humber. Those 2 struggling starters combined to allow 9 earned runs in almost 12 innings.
Floyd hasn’t been on his game for almost a month. Ever since throwing 7+ shut out innings against the Royals, the right-hander has allowed 4 or more earned runs in his past 5 starts. His ERA in that time is 10.71. After that May 11th start, Floyd’s ERA was 2.53, now it’s 5.38. Can’t blame his struggles on pitch count, as he hasn’t thrown even 100 since that start versus the Royals. On a positive note, he did strike out 9 Astros, tying his season high.
Humber is struggling too, but he has been a little more up and down than Floyd. The thing about Humber is that one start you’ll think he has turned the corner, then the next he looks like he doesn’t belong in the rotation. Since his perfect game 9 weeks ago, Humber has had 4 good starts, and 5 not so good. My problem is that he really taxes the bullpen. Only once since that perfecto has he gone 7 innings. Since I did it with Floyd, I’ll do it with Humber. After his perfect game, Humber’s ERA was a sparkling 0.63. It is now 5.92. That equates to a 7.50 ERA between April 21st and now. Humber also struck out 9, tying his season high, as well.
I guess the hope is that when John Danks returns all will be good on the South Side, but ut wasn’t like he was all that when he was pitching, as his 5.70 ERA would attest. BTW: Danks is on schedule to return next week when the Sox play at the Dodgers.
What more can be said about Sale? The first year starter leads the A.L. in ERA (2.05), and tied for the lead in wins with 8. It’s still a tad early, but Sale does have a shot at starting for the American League at the All-Star game. He could be joined on the team by Jake Peavy.
Sale’s start against the Astros, in totality, may be his best of the year. No runs allowed in 8 innings, but he only threw 101 pitches. If he keeps his pitch count low like that, the A.L., and N.L. is in more trouble than it already faces.
Bullpen was shaky the past 3 days too. in just 7.2 innings they gave up 9 earned runs for an ERA close to 12.
Congrats to Jordan Danks, who got his first MLB hit on Friday.
Adam Dunn now has 20 home runs! Don’t give a damn about his batting average, he has reverted to past form.
Nice to see Lucas Harrell pitch decently on Sunday. I used to talk with Harrell when he first came up, and he was a nice kid. He battled arm injuries for awhile, but it looks like he has found a home in Houston. He looked to be part of the Sox future until a horrible spring start in 2011, in a time where a good one may have locked up his roster spot.
Harrell appeared to be throwing a bit harder today, topping out at 94 at one point. He was jacked up a tad. He got the win, good for him.
I know it’s supposed to be funny, but Sox TV announcers every player under 70 inches diminutive gets old. I bet the Sox wouldn’t mind having Jose Altuve of the Astros.
Gordon Beckham has struggled somewhat this season, while Altuve has been a revelation in Houston. 4 home runs and a .326 average would look pretty good in the Sox line up. That is not a shot at Beckham, but right now Altuve is the better player right now–at least offensively.
Interleague play continues for the Sox as they start a 3 game series in St. Louis, followed by 3 in LA. That trip to LA is reminiscent of the last time the Sox made a trip to So. Cal., as after he trip they come home to face the Cubbies.
Sox leave town in 1st place, a half-game up on Cleveland.