After struggling to capitalize on opportunities against Danny Duffy on Saturday, the White Sox offense took advantage of the Royals bullpen day on Sunday. Yoan Moncada and Daniel Palka both had three-hit days in helping the Sox to a 10-1 win and improving the win-loss record to 33-62.
The afternoon was on verge of being a bad one for Lucas Giolito who scuffled in the first inning. Two walks in the first three batters put Giolito in a dicey situation, and his defense helped avoid allowing the first run on Salvador Perez’s single. Daniel Palka was able to get a quick throw to Yolmer Sanchez for the first part of the relay, and Sanchez easily threw out Jorge Bonifacio at home. Giolito struck out Lucas Duda looking to end the first frame, but it took 30 pitches to do so.
While Palka helped Giolito defensively the in the top half, he provided additional support in the bottom of the frame belting his 12th home run of the season to put the Sox up, 2-0. Yoan Moncada helped lead things off with a single and was able to get the Sox out of a double play on Jose Abreu’s grounder by taking off early to second base. Running on that play allowed Palka a chance to drive Moncada in with two outs. Bad baserunning cost the Royals a big inning, and good baserunning helped the Sox take an early lead.
The third inning is where Moncada had a bad baserunning play getting doubled off on a line drive from Yolmer Sanchez. It appeared that the hit-and-run game was on so it was more bad luck for Moncada than being TOOTBLAN worthy, but it was a quick two outs for the Sox. Just like the first inning, the offense clicked with two outs. Jose Abreu walked and advanced to third base on Palka’s single. Royals pitcher Brian Flynn threw a wild pitch which allowed Abreu to score and Palka to move to second base as the Sox led 3-0. Leury Garcia was able to cash in on the run-scoring opportunity driving Palka in with a single to left field to make it 4-0.
Then the game got way out of hand in the fifth. Batting right-handed, Moncada hit his 12th home run of 2018 to lead it off. The offense clicked again with two outs as the Sox had five straight hits. With the bases loaded, Tim Anderson doubled down the left field line scoring Palka and Garcia, and Kevan Smith doubled to left field plating Matt Davidson and Anderson. Leading 9-0, eight of those runs happened when the Sox had two outs.
One more run was added in the sixth inning as Moncada got to third base hitting his 19th double of 2018 and advancing to third on the error by Bonifacio. Yolmer Sanchez singled to left field driving in Moncada and now the Sox lead 10-0.
Meanwhile, Giolito was able to settle down after the first inning and lasted into the seventh despite the early high pitch count. His line was 6.1 IP 2 H 0 ER 3 BB 6 K, which now lowers Giolito’s ERA to 6.18 on the season. There’s also hope that a Sox starting pitcher will win 10+ games in 2018 as Giolito’s win-loss record is 6-8, for those that still care about such things.
With the next four days off during the All-Star break, it’s nice to have a good moment like Sunday while we wait for play to pick up again.
Record: 33-62 | Box Score
Two good games in this series and one dud. Curious as to which of the three games Lurker Laura decided to attend.
Alas, it was the dud. Figures.
It seems like any time the Sox have a day honoring a particular team or a player, the game following the event is terrible. Maybe that’s recency bias given the Mark Buehrle day dud from last year, but it sure seems that way.
I remember from a few years back Paulie day was a dud too. Though the game where they honored Paulie while he was still on the team right before he left delivered. Particularly as Jose Abreu hit his record breaking 36 rookie HR into the right field seats about 4 sections from where I was sitting that night. Almost like a symbolic passing of guard.
Palka continues to look useful for the future which is really nice, but Abreu going hitless amidst the feast was concerning. What is going on with our all star lately?