White Sox resorting to emergency starters during crisis in standings

White Sox pitcher Davis Martin
(Brian Sevald/USA TODAY Sports)

In three of the four games he’s been asked to pitch over the last two months, Davis Martin has posted the following lines:

  • Aug. 9: 5.2 IP, 3 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 1 BB, 3 K
  • Sept. 2: 5 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 2 K
  • Sept. 17: 6 IP, 3 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 1 BB, 5 K

The White Sox won each of those games by one run despite scoring only 10 runs total.

Saturday’s gem came on short notice. He started Wednesday’s game for Charlotte, but he was limited to one inning because Johnny Cueto has been dealing with dizziness. That Martin threw just 10 pitches allowed everybody to call it a glorified side day, and while that’s usually just euphemistic talk for “our pitching plans are in shambles,” Martin actually made good on the audible.

There was one game in which Martin did not make good. He blew a quick 3-0 lead by allowing five runs in the second of his three unsuccessful innings against the Diamondbacks on Aug. 27, in what was a wholly unsuccessful series against the Diamondbacks.

It’s only worth mentioning that start to complete the accounting. Speak only of the games he helped win, and it’d invite the question about building the whole plane out of him, and while it’d be fun to call him Lockheed Martin, he occasionally reminds everybody why he wasn’t on preseason top-30 prospect lists.

Nevertheless, it’s remarkable that he’s been able to hold up as the rotation’s last line of defense. He’s the last new starting option the White Sox have used this season, and with 50 above-average innings and counting, Martin’s doing what he can to prevent the Sox from having to dig deeper.

The problem is that Martin can’t fill two rotation spots by himself. He bought the Sox an extra day for Cueto, but it turns out Cueto needs at least two. Meanwhile, Michael Kopech also went on the shelf with shoulder inflammation, and while he’d like to pitch again this season, it might not be possible and/or worth it.

So here comes Vince Velasquez, the team’s original sixth starter, to show that he still can contribute outside of mop-up and long-relief situations. He’ll be supplemented by Tanner Banks, who is back on the roster with Joe Kelly on family medical leave, so the Sox have an initial idea of how to piggyback through six, with an off day on Monday for recovery.

This is a bad time for the White Sox have to buy two days, but here’s a case where the offense could step up by showing everybody why the Detroit Tigers have been a colossal disappointment. Instead, they’ve responded by scoring four runs over the series’ first 18 innings in regulation. For all the obstacles the pitching staff has encountered, the failure of the 2022 White Sox always comes back a lineup that hasn’t done nearly enough to provide breathing room.

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As Cirensica

if Velazquez goes 5, that’d be a success. I hope he goes more to give the bullpen fewer innings to pick. Speaking of exhausted bullpen the Guardians’ have to be pushing its limits. I hope the Twins avoid a sweep.


He didn’t make it but Vaughn’s slam may make it good enough.

Joliet Orange Sox

I read Andrew Vaughn’s mind after he hit the grand slam and he was thinking “Take that Sox Machine poll voters!”


I voted for Vaughn in both polls.



Last edited 1 year ago by PauliePaulie

Jim ran a couple of polls over a 2-week span about who would lead the Sox in homers.

Joliet Orange Sox


Just to clarify, I was joking with my post above. I can read minds for people in the same room but not through the television so I don’t know Vaughn’s actual thoughts.

As Cirensica

Jimenez might have a chance…mercy, that ball was murdered


As dire as things are today, by the end of Thursday they could be tied for first and holding the tie-breaker over Cleveland. It’s not implausible that the Twins could wake up and take these last 2. It’s also not implausible that the Sox sweep Cleveland.

Admittedly, it’s not the likely outcome, but no one can say it’s impossible.


at this point i think the chances of the Sox sweeping Cleveland are vastly higher than the twins not getting swept

As Cirensica

There is a chance those last 6 games against the Royals might be tougher for the Guardians than facing the Twins

#3 for HOF

comment image


Pollock is putting on a nice little burst here, he might get to 15 and that’s considering he had zero on May 7th.


If my math is correct, the Sox have slyly lined up Cease, Cueto, and Lynn for the Cleveland series. 4D chess indeed.

Last edited 1 year ago by ParisSox
As Cirensica

With Leury as an after thought since Cairo took over, Eloy able to play everyday as a DH, and Cairo’s late innings defensive replacements, we might have a chance.


I actually forgot about Leury. Cairo for President!

Last edited 1 year ago by ParisSox

You mean Romy for President! Cairo has done little other than to benefit from Romy taking the 2nd base job away from Leury and Josh.


Although Romy is currently on a 1 for 18 streak so a Leury start is imminent.


Ok, now let Banks get the 3 inning save.

Joliet Orange Sox

Jason and Steve are talking about how it would’ve been impossible to see the rare three-inning save coming when Banks came in. (First one for the Sox since April 23, 2018.) Jason and Steve don’t know about Foulkelore’s powers of prophecy.


I have an unnatural affinity for the three inning save for the rare scenarios when it’s possible/applicable.

Last edited 1 year ago by Foulkelore

Sox Machine’s got talent!


Doesn’t the box score show Banks getting the Win?


The starter didn’t go 5 but left with a lead that was never relinquished. The scorer names the most effective reliever the winning pitcher.

Joliet Orange Sox

@metasox You are correct! The scorer apparently did pick Banks to award the win to as @GrinnellSteve explained.

This is more evidence that wins in baseball are just odd. I was going off Jason and Steve talking about Banks getting the save (which he would have gotten if not chosen for the win). I think this turn of events should in no way diminish our respect for @Foulklore and his gift of prophecy.

Ooops. Should be @Foulkelore not @Foulklore.


Oh yeah, didn’t even think about that live. Velasquez didn’t go 5 innings, so you get the old judgment call win.

Right Size Wrong Shape

Len and DJ were discussing who might get the win around the 7th or 8th. Which got me wondering, since they are both made up stats anyway, why can’t a player earn a win and a save in the same game? What if Tanner Banks pitches until he’s 49, becomes a dominant closer and comes up 1 save short of Mariano Rivera’s record. What then? Can he retroactively trade in this win for a save?

One of the conditions for a save is not being the winning pitcher. The save rule is even goofier than the win rule. Maybe this win will help Banks catch Cy Young for most career wins and Banks will be glad he got the win not the save.