From Danks to Jenks, curves noteworthy

One day after I came up with one way the 2010 White Sox could theoretically put together a run, they went ahead and put together the template: Just enough offense to allow John Danks one mistake.
And seriously, one mistake is all he made.  It was a performance so brilliant that I’m going to award him four Jawin’ Johnnys.

Two things stood out to me in particular:
No. 1: That might’ve been the best cutter I’ve ever seen him throw.
He was pretty vicious with it, really working it inside to right-handed hitters, and missing far more often inside than over the heart of the plate.  It bought him time and made his changeup all the more effective when he finally found it around the fourth inning.
No. 2: The Rays didn’t know what to do with his curve.
Ever since Danks developed the cutter, he’s basically abandoned his curve, and for the better.  Unlike Bobby Jenks’ hook, Danks’ curve has always been his least effective offering.  It’s more of a show-me pitch.
Danks only threw seven curves against the Rays, but five of them were good for called strikes, and another was fouled off.  He didn’t have outstanding location on them, but the count must have surprised the Tampa Bay hitters, as he was using it nicely to grab early strikes.
Perhaps the advance scouting team deserves credit, or perhaps he and A.J. Pierzynski may have learned something from his previous outing.  Danks had no problems throwing his curve for strikes, but the only two Toronto hits came on curves. He threw 12 of them against the Jays, which is high for him, so maybe he and Pierzynski picked his spots better.
(And speaking of Jenks, he resembled Heritage Bobby: 18 pitches: 12 fastballs, four curves for an easy save. How ’bout it.)
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Also convenient was A.J. Pierzynski addressing his future with the White Sox.
It sounds pretty cut-and-dried:

‘‘I’m sure,’’ Pierzynski said of the trade talk surfacing in the media. ‘‘Everyone knows my situation, I’m a free agent at the end of the year. But I also know this, if it gets to about June then they can’t trade me, so they’re going to have to make a decision here pretty quick.’’

I don’t know if that means he wouldn’t accept any trade, but I can certainly see him being stubborn and exercising his rights just for the hell of it.  The Sox should be prepared for that reality.
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Christian Marrero Reading Room:
*Ozzie Guillen vowed to stick with one lineup for lefties and one for righties. Andruw Jones should be in both.
*The vultures are circling at MLB Trade Rumors, which lists the tradeable White Sox should they become sellers.
*Kenny Williams said it’s too early to talk trades, even by his standards.  But he was in lighter spirits than one would expect.

“You don’t like what you see, you turn to the news for five minutes and watch ABC or NBC to see what’s happening in Chicago, and turn it back. Still don’t like what’s going on? Let’s turn to ‘Growing Pains.’ But I can always go back. You never know when your team might come back.”

I’m filing that one away.
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Minor league roundup:

  • Durham 11, Charlotte 0
    • Jordan Danks went 2-for-4 with a strikeout.
    • Dayan Viciedo (one K) and C.J. Retherford (two K’s) each went 0-for-3.
    • Jeff Marquez cruised until the fourth inning. Final line: 6 IP, 7 H, 5 R, 3 BB, 4 K, 1 HR.
    • Things aren’t going well for Greg Aquino, who allowed three runs on four hits and a walk in an inning of work.
  • Jacksonville 6, Birmingham 5
    • Brent Morel went 3-for-5 with a double, an RBI and two runs scored.
    • Christian Marrero went 1-for-4 with a walk and a strikeout, but was caught stealing.
    • John Shelby singled, doubled and drove in a run in five at-bats.
    • Jhonny Nunez had his first rough start this season: 5 IP, 6 H, 3 ER, 4 BB, 5 K, 2 HR.
  • Winston-Salem 7, Myrtle Beach 1
    • Nathan Jones had a great outing, allowing just one run on three hits and a walk over 6 2/3 innings. He struck out five.
    • Santos Rodriguez got back on track with a perfect inning, striking out two. Kyle Bellamy did the same.
    • Jon Gilmore had three hits, raising his average to .388.
    • Eduardo Escobar doubled and struck out in four at-bats.
    • Drew Garcia went 2-for-5 with a homer and three RBI; Justin Greene singled, walked twice and stole his third base.
  • Kannapolis 3, Rome 2 (20 innings)
    • Trayce Thompson went 2-for-6 with his second homer (a solo shot) and two walks. He struck out once and was caught stealing.
    • Kyle Colligan went 2-for-8 with a double, a walk and two RBI.
    • Nick Ciolli (double, three K’s) and Kevin Dubler (double, one K) had two hits as well.
    • Juan Silverio went 1-for-8 with three strikeouts.
    • Ryan Buch (one hit, one walk) and Drew O’Neil (one hit, three K’s) threw two scoreless innings.
    • Jimmy Ballinger contributed three hitless innings of relief, striking out three to just one walk.
    • They played 20 innings in four hours and 41 minutes.

The White Sox added another left-handed arm by acquiring Double-A pitcher Andrew Dobies from Boston for a player to be named later or cash. He appears to be nothing special.

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Jim Margalus
Jim Margalus

Writing about the White Sox for a 16th season, first here, then at South Side Sox, and now here again. Let’s talk curling.

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ballyb

“Ozzie Guillen vowed to stick with one lineup for lefties and one for righties.”
I hadn’t seen that. Sounds to me like Ozzie had a sitdown with / got a directive from Williams to stop F-ing around? Not used to hearing even semi mea culpas from him.

fustercluck

Too soon, Kenny! Then again, maybe he’s taking Boner pretty hard. Wait, that didn’t come out right.
When further pressed about his relationship with Jerry, Ozzie, and Walk, Kenny says, “As long as we’ve got each other, we’ve got the world spinning right in our hands. Rain or shine; all the time. We’ve got each other. Share in the laughter and love.”

fustercluck

Alan Thicke: “Hey, I wrote that!”

fustercluck

Ahh, Fernwood 2 Night. That’s some nice comedy cred.

knoxfire30

Observations from last night
1. Danks continues to be underrated, 5th in era in the al in 08, won game 163, solid 09, really damn good start to 2010.
2. Someone is going to overpay for carl crawford this offseason, I want that to be the whitesox. Speed and power, he is just an incredible athlete.
3. Our fans blow, this may rub hardcore people that show up to this board, but come on, if there were 8,000 people in attendence last night I would be shocked.
4. Teahan looks scared to death every time a ball is hit at him, backpedaling, more or less catching the ball as oppose to transfering it as good fielders do.
5. Jones has to play every day until further notice.

marshlands

I don’t know, Knox. They drew 19,000 on a 50 degree day in April. That doesn’t seem horrible.
Were YOU there?

knoxfire30

I was there, 19,00 would be the number if the guys doing the gore bush recount were in charge. SOLD tickets and actual attendence are two different numbers, believe me it was in the 8-10 K range, nowhere near 20.

marshlands

Good point.
And start Andruw Jones everyday please.

striker

Let’s start a petition to play Andruw Jones everyday. Who’s in?

striker
Shinons

Hmm…that seems to resemble yesterday’s lefty lineup…

mechanicalturk

I’m not sure if “Andruw Jones should be in both” means that Ozzie is likely to put him in both, or that the best decision that Ozzie probably won’t make is to put him in both.
If last night was the lineup against lefties, I’m not sure how I’d change it for righties. If we assume Kotsay will DH, where does Jones go? He certainly wouldn’t replace Quentin in right, and having Pierre only play against lefties is silly. He’s not replacing Rios, either, since Rios is one of the few guys not struggling. The only other real option is to have Kotsay play first, and taking Paulie out of the lineup doesn’t seem wise either.
The only thing I can think of that Ozzie will do to get Kotsay in the lineup is take out Dr. Jones. So here’s hoping he just shuffles the batting order a little bit.

bberdl20

Regarding A.J.’s comment. I think his 10 and 5 status begins around the beginning of June and with those rights he automatically has some sort of conditional no trade clause.
Q: What’s a “10-and-5” man?
A: A player who has accumulated 10 years or more of Major League service, with at least the last 5 of them being with the same team. “10-and-5” players can veto trades or waiver claims. (http://www.baseball1.com/faqs/general_info.html#Q8)
That is probably what A.J. was coyly referring to.