The White Sox led 3-0 before the Tigers recorded their first out, and the Sox threatened still with runners on second and third, but Jose Ureña dodged further damage with a strikeout and two groundouts. Those two potential runs felt consequential when Dylan Cease started his afternoon by allowing a walk and a homer.
It turns out they weren’t.
The White Sox scored five more in the second, the first of two five-spots on the day, and the game spiritually culminated in Tigers reliever Beau Burrows exiting the game after vomiting on the mound.
The specifics of the innings aren’t as important as the general themes. For instance, the Sox faced José Ureña for the third time, and now there’s a trend of diminishing returns:
- April 27: 7 IP, 7 H, 2 R, 1 ER, 3 BB, 2 K
- June 6: 5 IP, 6 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 2 BB, 1 K
- Today: 1.2 IP, 5 H, 8 R, 7 ER, 3 BB, 1 K
Perhaps Brian Goodwin was the difference. He made his White Sox debut a thunderous one. He backed Tim Anderson’s leadoff double with one of his own, then followed it up with a three-run homer in the second. He tacked on an RBI groundout to make it five runs driven in on the day. An encore will be difficult to come by.
YermÍn Mercedes and Leury García each added two hits and three RBIs, while Anderson had the inverse. Danny Mendick reached base four times from the ninth spot with a double and three walks. José Abreu was the only White Sox who failed to reach base twice, but he came through with a hit in the form of a double in his final at-bat.
The White Sox drew 10 walks for the second time this year, actually winning the game here. A.J. Hinch’s pitching plans were immediately compromised by Ureña’s start, but became more complicated when Daniel Norris, Beau Burrows and Alex Lange all had problems finding the zone. Burrows seemed to be the wear-it guy coming up from Toledo, but he departed the game after displaying some form of stomach issue during an at-bat with Mercedes. Lange entered and displayed no concept of the strike zone, and through six innings, the Detroit staff had thrown 75 more pitches.
Speaking of Mercedes, he successfully dodged further controversy, taking a pitch on 3-0 with the White Sox up 11, then flying out against pitching infielder Harold Castro without breaking any unwritten rules. The White Sox couldn’t score off Castro, but they did tag pitching catcher Jake Rogers for two runs in the eighth, with Zack Collins coming off the bench for an RBI double.
Tony La Russa was able to get some players breathers. Anderson and Abreu both took seats during the game, Yoán Moncada and Adam Engel never played, and Dylan Cease could take a rest after five innings and 82 pitches. The Tiger Tamer improved to 8-0 in eight career starts against Detroit, although his ERA rose from 1.91 to 2.09. He overcame the false start to keep Detroit scoreless the rest of the way, with both of his breaking balls doing most of the damage.
Ryan Burr and Matt Foster closed out the game with two innings apiece, both working around a couple of walks that seemed unnecessary given the margin.
Record: 40-24 | Box score | Statcast
Alternative headline: A Goodwin
I wonder if Jim will ever get the chance to use that headline this season.
So we’re currently 16 games over .500, which I believe is a 90 win pace. What does the rest of the schedule look like for going at least .500?
It’s so much better than you believe. You have to use Win%, not games over .500. The Sox are at a .625 Win% which is tied for second best in the Majors.
.625 * 162 = 101.25 game pace
Strength of Schedule for the rest of the season is .496 (12th easiest in MLB). Strength of Schedule isn’t a perfect metric because the best teams usually have the weakest opponent win percentage by virtue of not having the face themselves. It’s too early to make any definitive calls, but the Sox are in a good place
Goodwin probably won’t turn out to be an all star level outfielder. But it would take very little for him to perform at a higher level than what Eaton has done all year. He is younger, healthier, better energy. He has a decent history, his 2019 season was certainly way better than anything Eaton is capable of. He should start instead of Eaton for at least a couple of weeks, unless he looks absolutely awful. I hope they give him every opportunity to play and make Eaton an irrelevant bench player.
Friggin’ TLR putting Goodwin in the two-hole! What did he think was… oh, wait, never mind.