Because of Wednesday’s postponement, the Chicago White Sox had to settle with a split in their two games versus the visiting Toronto Blue Jays. The Sox won the series opener on Monday and appeared on their way to winning Tuesday as well. That is, if they didn’t decide to play one of their worst games all season. The Sox committed three errors, and made multiple base-running mistakes that resulted in a 7-5 loss in extra innings. With the split, the Sox finished their six-game home-stand with a 3-3 record.
Here’s how the home-stand ended:
Monday, June 10th – White Sox 10, Blue Jays 6
The White Sox’ offense enjoyed one of their better nights of the season by scoring 10 runs on 15 hits. Adam Dunn led the way with a 4-for-4 effort, including two home runs and five RBI. The pair of homers for Dunn were his 15th and 16th of the season, and the five RBI increased his total to 37 on the year. Despite the recent power surge, Dunn’s average still sits at a dismal .181. Alejandro De Aza, Alexei Ramirez, and Gordon Beckham all produced multi-hit games of their own, with De Aza picking up 2 RBI to raise his season total to 30.
All the offense was more than enough to get starter Dylan Axelrod off the hook. Axelrod struggled during his four-plus innings of work, allowing six runs on eight hits, four walks, and just one strikeout. Axelrod surrendered three home runs on the night, as he endured one of his worst starts of the season. The poor outing increased Axelrod’s ERA to 4.26, to go along with a 1.36 WHIP.
With Axelrod only going four innings, the bullpen was asked to pitch five innings in order to get the win. Nate Jones, Matt Thornton, Matt Lindstrom, and Jesse Crain combined to pitch four scoreless innings, before Addison Reed came in to pitch the ninth. Even though it was not a save situation, Reed was brought into the game because he had already “warmed” up with Sox clinging to a 7-6 lead in the bottom of the eighth.
Tuesday, June 11th – Blue Jays 7, White Sox 5 (10 innings)
The White Sox had another solid night at the plate, scoring five runs on eleven hits, but it was not enough to get a victory. Conor Gillaspie supplied a large chunk of the offense on a 3-run homer in the fourth inning to give the Sox a 5-2 lead. Adam Dunn added a solo shot two innings earlier, giving him 17th on the season. Alex Rios, Dayan Viciedo, and Tyler Flowers also had nice nights with each player enjoying multi-hit performances.
Although the offense was sufficient, it would not be enough to erase the bad defensive effort by the Sox. The Sox committed three errors which made things a lot worse than they should have been for starter Jose Quintana. Quintana pitched 6.1 innings, allowing four runs (two earned) on six hits, one walk, and five strikeouts. Quintana did surrender a home run, but he deserved a better outcome on the night.
Despite the errors, the Sox were just one out away from winning the game when Jose Bautista tied the game on a solo home run off closer Addison Reed. Reed hung a 0-2 slider and Bautista served it into the White Sox bullpen. The Blue Jays would end up scoring twice in the 10th inning off of Ramon Troncoso, ultimately giving them the 7-5 victory.
Record: 28-35, Last place in AL Central (7.5 games back)
Up Next: The White Sox begin a 10-game road-trip with a four-game set with the Houston Astros (23-44) that begins tonight.
Friday, June 14th at 7:10pm CT: Chris Sale (5-4, 2.68 ERA) vs. Erik Bedard (1-3, 5.34 ERA)
Saturday, June 15th at 6:15pm CT: John Danks (1-2, 4.13 ERA) vs. Lucas Harrell (4-7, 4.52 ERA)
Sunday, June 16th at 1:10pm CT: Hector Santiago (2-4, 3.12 ERA) vs. Dallas Keuchel (3-3, 4.37 ERA)
Monday, June 17th at 7:10pm CT: Jose Quintana (3-2, 3.86 ERA) vs. Bud Norris (5-6, 3.47 ERA)
Prediction: At this point in the season there are not many teams playing worse than the White Sox, but the Astros are one of those clubs. At 21 games under .500, the Astros sit 17.5 games out of first place and have no intentions of contending. The difference between the White Sox’ and Astros’ struggles is simple. The Astros are in full-out rebuilding mode and are “trying” to be bad. The White Sox, however, aren’t rebuilding. They’re just bad. If the Sox have any hopes of turning their season around, then they need to start by winning at least three games in this series. White Sox win three of four.
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