Glass half full: The White Sox entered the ninth down five, but managed to force Kansas City into a save situation in a night game before a day game, setting up a potential Jose Paniagua-like shift in momentum, except in the way that helps this time.
Glass half empty: The two guys who did all the damage weren’t rosterable a week ago.
Given that the White Sox finally scored more than two runs in this, the sixth game of the second half, I think you have to go with the latter for a night.
All five runs were produced by the newcomers. Ryan Goins, a 31-year-old journeyman who joined the White Sox today in place of the injured Eloy Jiménez, instantly became the best thing about them. He went 2-for-3 including a nifty tag and a two-run homer, which were the two leading highlights through eight. Then A.J. Reed, who was stuck on Houston’s Triple-A roster until the Sox claimed him over the All-Star break, came off the bench and delivered a beefy pinch-hit three-run homer in the ninth.
Around them was another mess, and another loss. They’re now 0-6 in the second half. An inventory of the lowlights:
No. 1: Iván Nova had the bases empty and two outs in the first inning after a beautiful 5-3-6 double play. Whit Merrifield tried to take third on a chopper to Yoan Moncada, but Moncada delayed Merrifield’s advance long enough with a look, and Goins dug out Jose Abreu’s one-hop throw to apply the tag.
Nova still trailed 2-0 after the first inning.
No. 2: Nova suffered a larger implosion in the fifth, after doing so well to keep the deficit at two. With the bases empty and two outs, Nova allowed a Merrifield single, a walk, a walk, a walk, and a Jorge Soler single. Rick Renteria pulled him before a sixth unsuccessful attempt to get the third out, which Jace Fry only got because Leury García caught Nicky Lopez trying to stretch his RBI single into an RBI double.
Nova walked five tonight. He hadn’t walked five in a game since his first start … of the 2014 season.
No. 3: The White Sox negated two of their threats via TOOTBLAN. In the fourth, García took off toward third on a James McCann liner right at the second baseman Merrifield, who stepped on second for the unassisted double play. In the fifth, Welington Castillo delivered a desired extra-base hit with a one-out double, but was thrown out at third when a Duffy pitch in the dirt hit the backstop and caromed right back to catcher Meibrys Viloria.
Those lowlights are what this recap would have entirely consisted of had Goins and Reed not showed up. Sometimes you have to take what they give you.
Especially when they give you this.