Guardians 4, White Sox 2: The big sweep

Had the White Sox lost this game after winning the first two, you might feel a punch to the gut, but you’d also understand. Shane Bieber has quieted the Sox before, and he’ll do it again. Johnny Cueto provided another quality start, but he got knocked by some weak contact early and a sequence of better contact late. It’s a 4-2 loss that makes sense.

But if you watched the first two games, the smaller things got to you. The Guardians turning two infield singles into runs over the first three innings, including a Cueto pickoff that ended up in right-field foul territory. The White Sox going walkless for the second time in three games, drawing just one over 112 plate appearances all series, and zero over their final 92. Settling for a 5-4 fielder’s choice instead of a 5-4-3 double play because the initial throw lacked zip.

Elvis Andrus tried to pump up his team by saying that “sooner or later [the Guardians are] going to crumble.” Alas, the brooms were needed to clean up what’s left of the home team.

The White Sox are now seven games back, which is effectively eight games because of the tiebreaker, which means their tragic number is six. The Sox intent on lowering that last number as quickly as possible. At least they showed the foresight to sign a do not resuscitate form, which minimizes the agony for everybody involved.

Record: 76-74 | 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: 3793
33 Comments
Oldest
Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
White Sox Wade

Thanks to Jim for watching this one so we didn’t have to. A sadly predictable result. #FIREEVERYONE

vanillablue

Leave out 2005 and this team has won six playoff games (and zero playoff series) in my lifetime. And I’m far from young.

Shingos Cheeseburgers

There are so many ways to quantitatively define how much of a failure the White Sox organization is but one my favorites is that the last time the White Sox won a playoff series at home there were 45 states.

Last edited 2 months ago by Shingos Cheeseburgers
ParisSox

this is brilliant

As Cirensica

…and sad!

ayeitsfabes

This doesn’t make sense to me. You’re penalizing the Sox for closing out their playoff victories on the road in 2005?

As Cirensica

Still a fact.

ayeitsfabes

Sure technically correct for the pendants out there

vanillablue

Pendants is a synonym for necklaces. You probably meant “pedant”, referring to someone who is excessively concerned about minor details.

Last edited 2 months ago by vanillablue
ayeitsfabes

lol good one you sure got me.

Shingos Cheeseburgers

I’m penalizing the fact they’ve closed out three playoff series over the past 100 years

ayeitsfabes

Then that’s the fact and an actual quantitative definition of failure. And that’s ignoring the post seasons up to 1969 were straight up World Series.

JimMargalusBiggestFan

It takes a man of strong constitution to continue writing these. Thanks

Michael Kenny

It takes a tough man to make a tender recap.

PauliePaulie

The culmination of decades of hubris fueled mismanagement.
I really hope there are finally job related consequences for these fan murdering SOB’s.

BillyKochFanClub

I think there’s going to be big changes this off-season.

Of course since it’s Jerry’s show, these changes will happen in the most backwards way possible and not be the least bit satisfying. It’ll initially sound promising, something along the lines of Kenny retiring, Hahn and the Sox “parting ways”, and LaRussa no longer managing.

Then you find out Konerko’s the new manager, LaRussa becomes the “special advisor” to the new GM Dave Stewart, who makes a franchise altering trade for Tyler Mahle and attaches Andrew Vaughn to Grandal in a salary dump trade for the right handed Diekman.

But I do think we’ll see some changes. yay.

PauliePaulie

“What” changes are made is also my current fear.
I have ’23 opening day with Miguel Cairo in the dugout managing a team “built” by Kenny Williams, Tony LaRussa and Chris Getz, because Hahn is fired but not replaced, using a $140mil payroll.

blackoutsox

it starts at the top, you’re better off checking the social security life expectancy table.

itaita

Im happy with now nonplussed i am about how the series went down. Its never fun when the baseball season ends no matter the record but this season wont be missed! Hopefully this sweep will cause them to officially shut down people like Robert or Kopech for the season and let them properly heal. Maybe bring up some the Charlotte guys who deserve a little run for the last couple weeks. If anything they might play with a little more energy.

Its too bad this was a home series. I actually think they would’ve had a better go of it if it was in Cleveland.

ParisSox

agree. i’d like them to bring Colas up. but god forbid they start his clock because then they might not be able to afford him 6 years from now at the next window of contention. For fucks sake.

metasox

With Vaughn the Sox took the approach of not caring about 6 yrs from now but rather rush someone and play him out of position to avoid paying someone else now. They really could go either way

shaggy65

I should have been more specific when I wished for this series to be a sweep

Esteban

White Doves and not Sox, pathetic. The Guardians taught the doves how to run in the field and to score with a little hitting. The homeclub is one of the most speedless team I´ve ever seen. Elvis is good running, but the rest does that awful. A triple is something of the past in WSox. It´s over, but my question is: would this bring any improvement next season? with the present front office is fair to doubt.

burning-phoneix

I’m afraid there is no improvement to be had. The roster construction is all sorts of messed up. Hahn had his shot and the rebuild failed, time to sell off the pieces get another rebuild going with someone else at the helm.

roke1960

The talent is there in many places so that a rebuild is not needed. But there must be a new GM/manager for this team to have any chance. They must get faster, better defensively, more left-handed, and show better plate discipline. All the things the Indians are for less than half the salary.

JimMargalusBiggestFan

I don’t see it. Too much redundancy, too many core players who either can’t play defense (Vaughn, Eloy) or don’t care to play defense (Robert, TA).

Not enough quality left handed hitting, zero depth in the starting rotation, and a bullpen that is saddled with Joe Kelly, Kendall Graveman, Jake Diekman, and Liam.

burning-phoneix

I honestly don’t see how the roster, as currently constructed, can ever really challenge for a title. They got to the playoffs in 2020 after beating up on the AL/NL Central and in 2021 with a losing record against teams over .500 and were bounced immediately both times. We are now gonna enter the 4th year of the “contention window” with zero playoff series wins to show for it. It’s greedy to assume the window is gonna stay open for anything past a 5th year. The rotation is basically just Dylan Cease and a bunch of question marks, the bullpen is a machine that produces walks and wild pitches and the offense is completely right handed, power-less and can’t draw a walk and to top it all off, we have the 7th highest payroll in the league and I still don’t know how it happened.
Players supposedly entering their prime don’t suddenly start learning how to field properly either. Sox defense was always bad and will remain so if these players continue to be in place.

Last edited 2 months ago by burning-phoneix
PauliePaulie

I agree that a good GM could tweak this roster and make the playoffs in ’23, Roke. But it would take another $190mil+ payroll. And I fear JR’s biggest offseason move will be spending cuts.

metasox

A tough question for a new GM may be to what degree to trade from the farm system – Sosa, etc. – if they believe they can add to existing pieces but don’t have much payroll flexibility

GrinnellSteve

I agree. A good GM could completely reshape this roster into a really good team for 2023 and beyond.

The 2 questions that have to be answered before we know if that reshaping will be allowed to occur are

1) Do we have a new GM capable of doing it?

2) Will Jerry give him (or her) a payroll equal to or even above this year’s?

If the answers to both those questions are affirmative, then we should be a strong contenders next year.

gibby32

Thanks for making this short.

blackoutsox

Congrats on second place Jerry!! After all, that’s what you wanted wasn’t it??

Sell the team.

chipporter

In thinking about Roke’s assessment that there are enough pieces in place to make this a decent roster, I think I have to agree.

Considering that current coaching was completely unable to advance the offensive maturity of any young player, with most taking steps backwards, i.e. Vaughn & Sheets not being taught the top of the strike zone, Roberts and Eloy not being taught plate discipline, Pollack and Moncada not being taught strategic hitting/moving baserunners, a good coaching staff may be able to make tremendous leaps with that group. The operative word being, may. If you were to add in teaching simple defensive lessons, like actually hitting the cutoff man, insisting on hustle to OF balls, etc, the improvement could be very significant.

The empirical evidence shows that when players got decent hitting instruction at AAA they came back with better results, whether that was mental or mechanical. The results didn’t always last, but again, that’s on current coaching.

I don’t expect Lynn, Kopech, Cease, to improve, they are what they are, with really Kopech at least having more room for upside. I don’t believe the answers to the holes are currently in the organization, so we’d need to backfill through FA or trades.

Personally, I’d like to see a fresh start by allowing Pito to move on and help create a new identity. That opens up AV at first and leaves Eloy at DH. I think we could see a significant jump in AV’s offense by moving him to first and relieving mental stress of OF, the same way we saw Moncada improve with the move from 2b to 3b and that’s my biggest reluctance to moving him…untapped potential of what already is really good offense.

The hopium pipe is now empty, back after a refill.