Angels 7, White Sox 4: Walk-off homer extends ugly start

Perhaps White Sox relievers should consider not striking out Mike Trout.

On Saturday, Evan Marshall started the eighth inning by fanning the Angels’ center fielder, only to give up a single, a triple and a homer to lose the game.

Tonight, Matt Foster inherited José Ruiz’s runner on first with Trout at the plate, and also came away with the strikeout. But then he walked Anthony Rendon and fell behind 3-1 to Jared Walsh. He threw a fastball up and away, and Walsh took it that direction for a walk-off three-run homer.

It was Walsh’s second homer on a fastball count against a White Sox reliever, as he greeted Codi Heuer with a solo shot after Dylan Cease left the game. That gave the Angels their second lead of the game after losing their first lead in hilarious fashion.

The White Sox scored their three runs in the fifth inning without the benefit of a hit. Or even a batted ball. They did benefit from Joe Maddon leaving Ohtani to try to complete the fifth despite diminishing control and more visible exertion in getting to 100 mph. Nick Madrigal reached with a one-out single, but he was replaced by Leury García on a fielder’s choice.

Ohtani only had to get one more out to qualify for the win, but he couldn’t get it. He walked Adam Eaton, then walked José Abreu to load the bases. In his third consecutive lengthy battle with Yoán Moncada, he threw a wild pitch that allowed García to score, and the other runners to move up.

Ohtani rallied to strike out Moncada on a full-count slider down and in, but Max Stassi didn’t catch it, and it dribbled toward the screen. Moncada took off for first after a brief hesitation. Stassi’s throw beat Moncada to the bag, but it bounced past first baseman Jared Walsh, and Eaton scored on the play. Abreu kept running throughout, beating David Fletcher’s high throw home. He slid under a leaping Ohtani and crashed into the pitcher’s ankle at home. The Angels lost the lead, and they almost lost Ohtani, who limped off the field but was declared fine. Maddon probably would’ve taken him out anyway because he was gassed.

The White Sox scored their next tying run under similarly hilarious circumstances in the ninth. Raisel Iglesias plunked Madrigal to start the inning, nearly flung the ball into foul territory on the right side fielding García’s sacrifice bunt, then actually flung the ball into foul territory on the left side after he fielded an Eaton comebacker and had Madrigal hung up between second and third. Madrigal scored the tying run and Eaton took second. Eaton couldn’t get home, because Abreu struck out, Moncada walked, and Yermín Mercedes popped out.

Alas, the White Sox never took the lead because they managed only five hits, and none with men on. They went 0-for-11 with runners in scoring position, and 0-for-19 with runners on base period. They occasionally made hard contact into well-aligned defenders, but other at-bats were lousy. Abreu twice had the go-ahead run in scoring position, including a runner on third with one out in the seventh. Over those last two at-bats, he swung and missed at six pitches below his knees.

Bullet points:

*Dylan Cease had a traditionally ugly first inning with traditionally ugly control problems, but settled down enough to get one out short of five. His line looks fits in with his career log: 4.2 IP, 5 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 3 BB, 3 K, 1 HR

*Tonight marked the fifth time in White Sox history that they scored at least four runs without an RBI. The last was a 6-4 loss to Seattle on Aug. 7, 1995. The one before that was the Andy Hawkins no-hitter.

Record: 1-3 | Box score | Statcast

Take a second to support Sox Machine on Patreon
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.

Articles: 3913
Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Shingos Cheeseburgers

One certainly would think the bullpen will improve but it’s a bit of a moot point if the offense vs RHP is this and if the bullpen decision making ends up in situations where Matt Foster and Jose Ruiz pitch the ninth in a tie game

Of course, neither of them should have been pitching in the ninth given Hendriks was already warmed up and ready.


I get the feeling that TLR is using this first week to feel out his bullpen. See who can do what in certain situations. Though to Ruiz credit he looked good.


Well that’s a pretty great way to start the season in a hole. What the hell did we spend all that money on Hendricks for if not to use him against the heart of the opponent’s lineup in a tie game in the 9th inning when he’s already warm?

Root Cause

TLR has another 158 more games to feel out the bullpen. If he wants to try them out, he can do it when the game is well in hand. A good coaching decision would have bought out Hendricks to even the series, the team needed the win for the record and for the morale boost. -1 on TLR


Team played like crap and didn’t deserve to win anyway. At least its a full season and not a 60 game one so a wet fart of a series like this isnt as bad as it could’ve been.

Joliet Orange Sox

This didn’t decide the game but how does Steve Cishek get a plate that much wider than everyone else?


Sox losses put me in a bad mood. That explains my generally poor disposition the last 56 years

Trooper Galactus

I seriously need to reconsider my fandom after over 35 years of this. The World Series win only bought them so much time and goodwill.


The reality is regime change is coming soon simply due to the age of our owner, father time claims us all. I’d say just stick it out for now. The last thing you want to do is quit now and then have the Sox bought by a Cohen type with big pockets that goes all in to win.


lol, after Reinsdorf is six feet under the next owner is more likely gonna be even more of a miser like Bruce Sherman.


A-rod is going be the next owner. I’m almost certain of that fact.


Well the upside there is that we won’t have to hear his atrocious commentary from the ESPN booth anymore.

John SF

Wasn’t there an article recently about JR’s children buying up more of the Sox?

It was a couple weeks ago behind a paywall.

It looks like he’s trying to keep the team in the family after his depth. Now, kids don’t always make the same mistakes but they also don’t have deep pockets so I wouldn’t expect better from them.


I think the flip side is that it may be easier to sell if they own a higher percentage of the team and don’t have to get signoff on a sale from a as many minority owners.

After almost 60 years of this, I would encourage you to remember the small sample size that 4 games is.

The 1983 Sox did not look like a team that would win 99 games and win a division by 20 games when they were 25-31 and 7 games out after losing two heartbreakers in a row on walk-offs to the A’s on a west coast trip in early June.

I’m not saying that will happen this year but I think reconsidering one’s fandom after 4 games this year after making through the mix of awful teams and worse-than-awful teams that was the 20-teens is surprising.


Thanks for talking me off the ledge. But please win for my sanity. ????


I wonder who will be this year’s Julio Cruz? (And if this midyear pickup will also sign a regrettable new contract to stay around as the team unexpectedly declines over the next four years.)

I’m not talking about a 4-game sample size here.

Shingos Cheeseburgers

The key to being a sane Sox fan is take whatever expectations the broader public has about the team and reduce them 30%. That way you’ll rarely be disappointed and every 40 years of so you’ll be pleasantly surprised.


More sage advice may never have been spoken.

Trooper Galactus

I know it’s early, but I’d be less concerned if this weren’t the exact same sort of bullshit baseball I’ve been watching for the last eight seasons. The familiarity is thoroughly depressing.

Last edited 1 year ago by Trooper Galactus
Michael Kenny

This series could’ve been pulled straight from the game logs of 2014.


I made this same exact comment on this forum last year when they were 1-4 after the first two games of the Cleveland series.

Not saying it’s not a valid feeling, but at least this year didn’t involve any blowout losses to the Twins.

This time around, I’m waiting until at least after the first homestand before making any sweeping judgements.

Trooper Galactus

They finished in third after blowing a pretty good lead late. I’m not encouraged by that template.


Well if was some bright spots in the series mostly yermin but this was a terrible series I’m not panicking but they need to get their shit together in SEA with better starting pitching,defense,and RISP!!! 0-19? REALLY??? Get it right boys LETS GO SOX!!!


Any update on Timmy? Will we be seeing Danny cone back? The Dark Angel of Depth strikes again.


The Sox announced him as day-to-day with a tight hamstring, so our next clue will be when the next lineup is made public.


Maybe I’m a fool but I’m not feeling too bad after the series. Nicky doesn’t overthrow the flip to TA and Robert catches a ball with his glove and not his noggin and this could easily be a split series or even a series win.

Root Cause

With Mercedes’s unexpected production we should have won 2 games.
If TLR wasn’t using games as tryouts for the bullpen, we would have won 3.

You are correct, a couple of small errors cost us. But there were several of those each game.


But Madrigal did screw up and Robert did noggin hog a ball and screwed up. If Moncada would have hit or the bullpen was better or the manager was awake or someone besides Mercedes came to play……….Sorry, but but for doesn’t cut it when you are a contender.


So you think Gold Glover Robert’s noggin catch is a fair representation of his abilities going forward and not some sort of weird random accident?


My worries stem from the fact that the profile of this team means you may lose 20 games due to “only if he would have…”

They aren’t particularly sound in terms of defense, base running, or consistent offensive production. That leaves a lot of space for bone-headed losses from bad fundamentals. And given the loss of Eloy and poor depth, they can’t just bash their way through it (as we’ve seen).


These guys just seem flat at the moment. I’m not seeing the swagger and pep of last year.

Last edited 1 year ago by Soxfan2

LaRussa said the contrary. He said.the fight shown to the end was one of the best losses he’s ever been a part of (if that makes sense.

Ricky’s boys still don’t quit.

Root Cause

No one has mentioned the left fielder. He just catches the ball and throws it back. I know he hasn’t gotten a lot of difficult balls to catch but a lot of our complaining has been about routine plays like catching and throwing. If he stays there long enough, Eloy might finish his rehab at DH.


I assume you’re talking about Vaughn? He didn’t play yesterday. He has two games in left, both pulled very early for defensive replacement–amounting to 12 innings in the field. Not much to say yet.


The bullpen was asked to cover 17+ innings over 4 days. I don’t care if you have the best ‘pen of all time, that’s not easy to do.

Should Hendriks have shown up in more than one game if that was the case? Yes. But the first time through the rotation is going to look closer to a playoff series without off days than a regular set of games given the limits placed on starter work loads.

The offense should be playing better at this point, but we’ve seen them be hot and cold, even at their best. But an 4-game set on the road against a very underrated Angels team is not the measuring stick I would use to evaluate this team.


Last year we got to measure this team against the Royals and Tigers for most of the year. It would be nice if once in a while a Sox team could measure up against real competition.


They got absolutely wrecked by the Twins in the opening series last year, and then played them to a season split.

They played 4 competitive games against a team that could very well win their division. I feel better about this series than I did at this point last year.

It’s not October yet. You don’t disqualify yourself for the championship because you lost 3/4 games.

I don’t think the Dodgers are panicking about their pitching staff allowing 5.25 runs a game against the Rockies.


Yes, I’m not saying panic. I’m just saying it would have been nice to see us beat a good team this year after a short season of mostly beating up on garbage teams.


The issue I’m seeing right now is that the starting pitchers aren’t getting very far into the game. Only one starter has made it to through the fifth. If the bullpen needs to get 4+ innings three games in a row, the games are going to look like what we’re seen.


The bullpens are going to be stretched more than ever this year due to the changing nature of the game and 2020’s pandemic-shortened season. There will be few 200-inning pitchers, if any.

Last edited 1 year ago by tommytwonines

This fandom is hilarious. Four games in and we’re panicking and bailing on the team. We have a pretty young team that is battling a lot of injuries early. We certainly didn’t play well and there are no excuses for the level of play, but it’s one series against a pretty good team. Let’s give them some time to figure things out.


If Anderson can’t play, who will lead off against Seattle lefty Sheffield tonight? If he were a righty, Eaton would be the obvious choice (gasp!), but I’m thinking Robert or Madrigal.

I’ll guess Madrigal.

The yahoos will malign TLR after-the-fact no matter whom he chooses.

Right Size Wrong Shape

How about Mercedes?

I wouldn’t be surprised to see him batting second – remember Fisk in ‘83.


This may be a bit of a wildcard, but I’d go Moncada. Just because he’s seemed a bit out of sync and maybe a shift like this just shakes something loose.