Tigers 6, White Sox 5 (10 innings): Another comeback wasted

Joe Kelly suffered his second blown save in as many days, although this one actually came in a save situation.

With the White Sox leading 5-4 entering the ninth inning, Pedro Grifol theoretically had the option of sticking with Kendall Graveman after a 1-2-3 eighth, or going to Reynaldo López since he had freshness on his side. Instead, continuing his pattern of handing his best relievers the toughest assignment, he gave the ball back to Kelly to face the top of the order, even though Kelly threw 23 pitches in a miserable seventh inning the day before.

In Kelly’s defense … the White Sox defense. There’s a chance Kelly picks up the save with only mild stress if Luis Robert Jr. conservatively played Riley Greene’s line drive to right center to concede the double. Instead, Robert took a too-direct angle to the ball and couldn’t stop it with an awkward sliding attempt. The ball rolled all the way to the wall, and while Greene entertained the thought of an inside-the-park homer, he wisely held up at third.

That passed the baton to Javier Báez, who bounced an up-and-in fastball to a drawn-in Tim Anderson. Ten days ago, Anderson bobbled a chopper in a similar situation to allow the go-ahead run to score, and sure enough, he rushed the exchange once again and had to settle for the out at first.

The misplays by the up-the-middle players the Sox expected to be stars sent the game to extras, where the White Sox went down in order against Alex Lange, even though Lange might not have thrown them a strike with any of his 12 pitches. At best, one was borderline. Andrew Vaughn and Yasmani Grandal each whiffed three times.

Alex Lange pitch chart

The Tigers swung away in the bottom of the 10th because they didn’t have the personnel to play small ball, but they still got the productive outs they needed. Jonathan Schoop flied out to deep center field to advance Spencer Torkelson, and following an intentional walk to Akil Baddoo, another fly to deep center by Eric Haase scored Torkelson. The White Sox lost a four-game series they could’ve very much won.

A split would’ve been acceptable given the way Dylan Cease pitched in this one. He followed the lead set by Lucas Giolito and Lance Lynn by issuing too many walks, although the Tigers did a better job at forcing them. They dragged out at-bats with 29 foul balls, the highest-ever total in a Cease start by two, which is evidence of an arsenal that has lost a bit of its power all over.

They could only damage him in the third inning, but that came in the form of an Akil Baddoo grand slam. Cease had lost the feel for his breaking stuff, and Baddoo came to the plate expecting fastballs. He fouled off the first two, but he timed up the third one, jumping on a high and inside fastball and launching it out to right.

That ended up being the Tigers’ only hit with runners in scoring position all game. They let other opportunities go by the boards, although Zack Short came about eight feet from hitting a grand slam in the second inning. Cease hung a 2-2 curveball, but Clint Frazier caught it on the warning track in left.

That allowed the Sox to hang around, even though they could only touch Eduardo Rodríguez with a Romy González solo shot in the second inning.

When Rodríguez departed after six, the White Sox found a way to see a rally all the way through. Will Vest entered and walked Frazier, followed by a Gavin Sheets pinch-hit single through the right side. Frazier should’ve made it to third, but his decision to check up at second didn’t hurt the Sox, because Anderson loaded the bases because Torkelson fell down after gloving his grounder to load the bases, and then Eloy Jiménez muscled a broken-bat fly inside the left-field line off new reliever Jose Cisnero for a two-run double.

Robert followed by hitting a chopper to third base, but Anderson got a great secondary lead and scored on the contact play to tie the game at 4. Jiménez advanced to third, and then came home on Vaughn’s sac fly to Baddoo in left that put the Sox ahead. The lead lasted longer than Saturday, but not by much.

Bullet points:

*Jake Burger was robbed of a solo homer to center field by Greene in the eighth inning.

*Garrett Crochet once again struggled with control, issuing three walks and a wild pitch over 1⅔ innings, but Keynan Middleton stranded the two runners he inherited, then threw a perfect sixth.

*Robert went 0-for-5 with three strikeouts and the misplay in center.

*Jiménez hit the two-run double and walked twice in his first game back.

Record: 22-33 | Box score | Statcast

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Facing the 29th ranked offense sox pitchers issued 30!!! walks this series. The A’s got smashed by the Astros this weekend too. Issued 8 walks total. We quadrupled the A’s in misery. You can’t give 30 free passes in any league. Cease needs to be traded to kick off the rebuild before further diminishing his value.

Tack on 30 hits and a hit batter. 61 Tiger baserunners. Over 15 per game.

Last edited 3 months ago by Adam

Nobody should even be mentioning a rebuild as long as this front office is in place

Last edited 3 months ago by dwjm3

The white sox pitchers are far more generous than the white sox owners.


Robert Jr. needs some maturing in Charlotte and should be forced to answer the question whether he wants to play 100% every day or just when he feels like.

And the walks! Why nibble? Nibble all the time in a huge ballpark. Answer that Katz!

Whatever this coaching staff is doing ain’t working. What a mess from top to bottom.


Why is it that when Robert has a bad game, people have these types of reactions, foolishly wanting to see him get set sent to the minors or traded? Other players don’t get the same treatment – when do the pitchforks come out for Andrew Vaughn, who has been worse by any meaningful measure this season?

Right Size Wrong Shape

Hmmm, what could be the difference?


Robert is about the only thing that has gone right with this team this year. A bit egocentric at times, but he is still their best player – by a lot at the moment.


Sox are now 12-11 vs the other turd teams in the central. In June the only games they play vs teams under .500 are 3 more vs the Tigers. Good luck with all that.

Hypothetical talk about this team winning a playoff series in 2023 is nonsensical, at this point. Time to blow it up, at least make the trade deadline interesting. No matter how awful Hahn is, the only choice they have is to trade guys who are leaving, or get nothing. It is obvious which is the better path.


Before these 4 series vs ALC opponents, I said they had to go 9-4 to keep them in it. Today’s debacle kept them short of hitting that mark. Anything but a convincing sweep of the Angels— unlikely— stick a fork in them and prepare for a very active deadline. I’m happy to trade just about anyone but Robert, Cease, and Kopech, for reasonable offers anyways.

Should be pretty easy to ship out Gio, Lynn, Graveman, Lopez, Kelly, Middleton, Bummer, and Hendriks if he’s okay with it. Pitching is always in demand at the deadline; maybe someone would even take on Clevinger’s contract for a RP prospect or whatever. Crochet and Santos I’d keep; they’ve got more years of control, and it looks like that’d be selling low on Crochet right now. Lambert’s gonna get a shot at the rotation I guess lol.

As for hitters: Yaz and Andrus are def gone. TA I think is too if someone’s willing to pony up; Dodgers seem like the most likely destination. Burger and/or Sheets might get packaged w/ a pitcher, like the Frazier+Kahnle for Rutherford trade. Benintendi probably isn’t moving, as trading a guy that soon into a long contract is very unusual, even though I’d be delighted to do so. Vaughn I really doubt has sufficient value rn to bother shipping out. Moncada’s expensive for what he is, but the moneyed Yanks and Phils have 3B issues so could still be interested.

The outfield group is unlikely to change much imo, so I think prospect focus would be C (if the Dodgers want TA, we’d demand Cartaya), MIF, and SP.


Sounds like a solid plan. 👍

#3 for HOF

Every player should be available if the right deal is there, even Robert and Cease.

There is little to nothing coming from the minors to move the needle significantly enough the next couple of years. Add in the fact that Jerry won’t spend for difference makers and Hahn’s inability to find value in the middle and dumpster diving tiers, and there is just no way they will build a contender.

They should move Cease while his value is still high and entertain offers Robert as well.


100% whole heartedly agree. No one is untouchable on this team, everyone should be available.

Joliet Orange Sox

I agree with the urge to move on from current players but here’s my contrarian view:

I think it is very unlikely that the Sox can get more value in return for Luis Robert than from keeping him. He’s signed for $9.5M this year, $12.5M next year, and $15M in 2025 with a team option for $20M in 2026 and in 2027. In today’s world, these are not very high salaries. The qualifying offer this upcoming offseason will exceed $20M. I think 5 affordable years of Luis Robert are worth more than anyone will pay for them.

#3 for HOF

I don’t disagree with you about Robert, and I’m not talking about trading him for a nominal return. If a team wants to provide the Sox a deal similar to when they traded Sale or Quintana, then should definitely consider it. I think the return might be even better since he plays every day and has a chance to be one of the best players in the game if he ever figures it out. I just don’t think he will do it in this organization.


I agree. I would advocate only for trading the guys leaving in the next year or two, unless they get incredible offers. No need to trade Robert, Cease, Kopech. But Gio, Kelly, Graveman, Lynn, Grandal, TA, Yoan, Liam, Bummer, Lopez, Clev… get what you can on all.


It’s all heartbreaking.

Alfornia Jones

More please. June should be overdrive for the Rick Hahn humiliation tour.


TA finally getting hot and Romy looking like a cromulent 9-hitter. Unfortunately LuBob looks lost again.


When will they announce Chris Getz as acting GM?


The replay happened to be on when I came home… did Garrett Crochet get far thicker than the last time I saw him?

Right Size Wrong Shape

He also spent time improving his Jasmine Stitch, hoping to cash in on some ready-made endorsement opportunities.


I don’t understand Grifol’s penchant for taking out a hot pitcher for a different pitcher. Yesterday he did it with Middleton after 12 pitches and Graveman after 6 pitches. He’s making the same mistakes over and over.

I’d hang this loss on him.

Last edited 3 months ago by FishSox

Taking out Graveman for Kelly showed remarkable balls given that Graveman had only thrown 6 pitches and Kelly had blown the save on Saturday and had thrown 23 pitches in doing so. Unfortunately, it was also dumb.