White Sox 9, Blue Jays 5: Eighth-inning explosion spoils Toronto bullpen game

Sox go from trailing by four to winning by four

Tonight was an old-fashioned Ricky’s Boys Don’t Quit affair, partially because Toronto’s Johnny Wholestaff effort ran out of bullets.

The White Sox blew up Toronto’s bullpen game, roaring back from a four-run deficit in the late innings. They started the rally against old friend Tyler Clippard, and a bases-clearing triple by Leury Garcia off Ryan Tepera  capped off a six-run eighth that pushed the game out of a save situation in the other direction.

The Sox were held to a Yolmer Sanchez solo shot — off another familiar foe, Jake Petricka — through six innings, with a couple other potential rallies short-circuited by double plays.

Then came Clippard.

And help Clippy did. He gave up a solo shot to Nicky Delmonico on an 0-2 splitter to get the Sox back on the board. A few batters later, Garcia came up with his first big hit of the game, cashing in Kevan Smith with a two-out RBI single, making it a 5-3 game.

After an effective inning from Juan Minaya, Jaime Garcia couldn’t reverse the flow. First, he issued a leadoff walk to Yoan Moncada, then fired high and wide to second on Sanchez’s chopper to the mound. It could’ve been two, but he was lucky to get one. Jose Abreu then rocketed a double to left to put the tying runs in scoring position.

In came Tepera to get the matchup advantage on Avisail Garcia. He got ahead 0-2, but he then left an 0-2 fastball on the outer half, and Garcia shot it through the left side to score Sanchez. Abreu had to hold up and only advanced to third.

Delmonico got plunked, which loaded the bases. Rick Renteria called for Daniel Palka to pinch-hit for Matt Davidson, and Palka smashed a single through the right side, scoring two and giving the Sox their first lead of the series.

And even then, Tepera’s problems weren’t over. He plunked Smith to cap off a plate appearance that opened with Smith trying to bunt, and Leury Garcia put a nail in the game by slicing a triple into the left-field corner.

Jace Fry would’ve been the one to get the save, but his 1-2-3 ninth is a mere game finished.

Fry’s inning capped off a strong night for the White Sox bullpen. Tyler Danish picked Russell Martin off second with the bases loaded to escape a jam in the fifth, then pitched a 1-2-3 sixth. Xavier Cedeno froze Martin with a slider to strand two in the seventh, and Minaya erased a leadoff single with a double play in the eighth.

In the end, everybody can forget about Lucas Giolito’s start, which was another odd one. Home plate umpire Chris Conroy favored high strikes over low ones, and while Giolito collected 17 swinging strikes — seven on his changeup — they were able to put his fastball into play. Some of it was BABIP, but the rest of it was the Blue Jays getting around on fastballs that weren’t up enough, in enough or powerful enough.

Unfortunately for John Axford, his first career start was overshadowed, too. He faced the minimum over three innings to start the game, allowing only a Smith infield single that was canceled out by a double play.

Bullet points:

*Leury Garcia exhibited the trade-off when he starts in center. He misplayed a drive to center field by overrunning it, but he also drove in four runs.

*The six-run eighth was the biggest inning for the White Sox this year.

*The Sox showed up for a crowd of 29,442.

Record: 37-67 | Box score

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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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Trooper Galactus

Not bad on the attendance for a team that’s looked like this one has all season.


Danish, bitches!

lil jimmy

Danish look good. Everything he throw dived at the plate.


Danish is showing that he deserved the promotion. Keep it up!


I’m sorry I missed this one.