Dodgers 5, White Sox 1: Bad First Inning Sinks Sox

Facing this Los Angeles Dodgers lineup is a tough test for any starting pitcher. For a struggling Lance Lynn, this group of hitters is not what the doctor would order to help him get back on track. To help prepare for tonight, Lynn focused on fastball command within the strike zone.

To start, Lynn commanded his various fastballs to punch out Mookie Betts on a high 92.6 mph heater. It was a good sign. However, Lynn hung a cutter to Freddie Freeman, who hit a deep fly that went foul, but would walk on a full count. Five pitches later on his bobblehead night, Will Smith got jiggy with Lynn’s inside sinker hitting his 10th home run of the season. Quickly, the Dodgers took a 2-0 lead.

It didn’t get better for Lynn. Jason Heyward’s worm burner cut through the infield shift for a single, and David Peralta brought him home, hitting another two-run jack. On 32 pitches, Lynn gave up four earned runs on three hits while striking two and walking one.

After that disastrous first inning, just like many of Lynn’s starts in 2023, he calmed down and found his rhythm. The cutter had enough horizontal break to generate whiffs against righties, and even at 93 mph, Dodgers hitters had a tough time against elevated fastballs. Lynn kept the Dodgers scoreless from the second to fifth innings. During those four innings, Lynn’s line looked like 4.0 IP 2 H 0 R 0 BB 4 K.

But for some unknown reason, manager Pedro Grifol demands Lynn throw 95+ pitches in every outing. Starting the sixth inning, Lynn allowed another single to Heyward and walked JD Martinez. After 105 pitches, Grifol decided that was enough and swapped Lynn for Garrett Crochet.

With Lynn responsible for runners on first and second base, it became a bases-loaded situation when Yoan Moncada didn’t get into a good fielding position and watched a grounder bounce off his glove. That fielding error is the third for Moncada in 2023, which turned up the heat on Crochet. Miguel Vargas was able to put a charge into a deep fly, but Luis Robert Jr. ran it down. That resulted in a sacrifice fly. Crochet would strike out James Outman and get Chris Taylor to pop out, ending the threat.

Lynn’s final line ends at 5.0 IP 6 H 5 R 4 ER 2 BB 6 K on 105 pitches with 67 for strikes. Pitch breakdown: 

  • 44 4-Seamers: 33% whiff rate
  • 25 Cutters: 33% whiff rate
  • 15 Sinkers: 13% whiff rate
  • 14 Curveballs: 14% whiff rate
  • 7 Changeups: 0% whiff rate

Amazingly, Dodgers hitters swung at 59 pitches against Lynn. That’s a bit wild for a team with such good plate discipline, and it limited Lynn’s called strikes to just eight pitches. The foul ball amount tripled called strikes with 28 against Lynn versus 15 pitches put into play.

If you want to be optimistic about Lynn, you’ll point at the four innings where he only allowed two baserunners to say there’s still life. If you are done watching Lynn, you’ll play the first inning on repeat. It was clear that Lynn wasn’t happy with his outing as he started to slam his glove and a nearby tablet into the bench.

Meanwhile, the White Sox offense was lifeless against Dodgers starter Tony Gonsolin. Only Andrew Vaughn and Yoan Moncada recorded base hits against Gonsolin. Moncada’s “hit” was thanks to some weird infield defense when Vargas threw to Gonsolin, who wasn’t on first base, but Freeman was in position.

At least Tim Anderson and Robert drew walks against Gonsolin, but the Dodgers starter went 6.0 IP 2 H 0 R 2 BB 6 K on 90 pitches.

White Sox didn’t score their only run of the game until the ninth inning off reliever Tayler Scott. Vaughn hit a deep fly to right field that Betts couldn’t run down as it bounced into the seats for a ground-rule double. Even with that good result, it should have ended in a TOOTBLAN for Vaughn as Moncada hit a comebacker right at Scott. Scott hesitated to throw to third base when Vaughn was halfway to the bag.

That delay allowed Vaughn to slide safely to third base putting runners on the corners with no outs. Unfortunately, Jake Burger struck out, and that was enough for Dodgers manager Dave Roberts to call for Brusdar Graterol. Yasmani Grandal got enough to push a fly ball to center field, allowing Vaughn to score.

Game Notes

  • Andrew Vaughn went 2-for-4 with a run scored
  • White Sox struck out 10 times
  • Tim Anderson went 0-for-3 with a BB. His OBP is now .299. He’ll probably bat leadoff tomorrow night. 
  • White Sox are 12-22 on the road.

Record: 29-39 | Box Score | StatCast

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Augusto Barojas

Coupled with the Twins 9th inning comeback, the Sox are one step closer to being sellers in June or July.

They have had issues vs RHP since and including 2020, but never this bad. I’m sure their stats aren’t great vs LHP either, but their level of badness vs RHP is epic. Robert’s OPS vs LHP is like .400 higher than vs RHP, Tim’s is .300 higher (and only .540 vs RHP), Eloy .150 higher. Just a completely god awful and ill constructed on the field team and lineup, with the same weaknesses for 4 straight years that have never been addressed.


Nothing like batting your 8-9 at 1-2 to turn things around.

The lineup would be bad in any configuration though. Grifol should just write DOOM after 1-9.


They rebuilt and are still mired in mediocrity.


More like mired in ass baseball. 10 games below 500 and I don’t see them getting back to even a mediocre 81-81. Once Jerry installs Nightengale as his new GM we’ll be good.


David Stearns is available. I’d trust him to rebuild our entire baseball operations and was the architect for same damn good Brewers teams with limited financial flexibility.

Jim Margalus

Bob Nightengale says Stearns is going to the Mets.


The Sox offense is the mirrored image of Lance Lynn: inadequate, but with occasional signs of life and lucky they are in the situation they are because, for most teams, they’d done.

As Cirensica

The offense is dead in the water. No traction. It does not seem to find an extra gear (or a gear for that matter). White Sox innings go by quickly with routine outs, and some strikeouts here and there.

Last year, there was some players hitting the ball hard, but the BABIP Gods were against us. This year? There is no BABIP God that can help this team. We are 22nd (12th last year) in barrels per PA, and 23rd (6th last year) in average hard hit balls. Something happened this team cannot hit the ball hard.


Rick Hahn traded Fernando Tatis, Marcus Semien, and Chris Bassit.


Yes but by doing so, he wisely left himself the financial flexibility to lock up the core! Oh wait

Augusto Barojas

The first two guys are better than every position player they have, or that has played for the Sox since Big Frank or Magglio. Tatis has had injuries, but Semien played 323 games in 2021/22. At 25/year, he was a complete bargain. Instead, the Sox are paying Alberto, Diekman, and Leury over 10M this year to play for any team that wants any of them, and Benintendi 15M.


Jerry wouldn’t of paid for the contracts any of them got.


Apologize if you discussed this on the podcast but could the Peter Principle be applying to Grifol? Maybe it’s too early to tell.


The Peter Principle requires the person in question to be competent at their previous job. Given the last 8 years of the Kansas City Royals, I don’t think that can at all be taken as a given.


Peter Principle is absolutely in play. His coaching staff has been unimpressive. Nothing he or his guys have promised in regard to preparation, hustle, and plate discipline has been apparent on the field. 

Don’t get me wrong — the FO and ownership bear the bulk of the responsibility for [gestures hands wildly] this mess, and no manager should be judged by how well he can be a duct taper. But so far, Grifol’s staff has failed to improve any facet of the on-field product. And that’s sad, because I like the guy and actually do think he was deserving of a shot despite coming from KC.

Last edited 3 months ago by bobsquad

Ironic that Leury Garcia provided the only “meaningful” highlight from this rebuild.


Hopefully, when they finally pull the plug on this season, they’ll send Crochet down and start stretching him out. But that would require foresight, which this organization doesn’t have.


Well, day 1 of not following the Sox went well. I didn’t have to aggravate myself with another listless performance. 2 more days of the boycott to go. I may just continue it right into the weekend. It sure makes for a peaceful, enjoyable evening.

Augusto Barojas

What does that tell you about whether there is any point to being a fan? Not following them seems more enjoyable. If I can only force myself to do that!


It’s tough, but I just think about Jerry, Rick and Kenny and then I realize that this is such a one-sided “relationship”. We care so deeply about this team and they just spit at us and don’t really care about the fans at all. I am hoping for the day when the White Sox have a real ownership/front office. Nightengale’s comments must have come straight from Jerry. Blame everyone else but the 3 Stooges for the team’s failures. I’m pretty certain that by July I won’t even be following them.


The REAL 3 Stooges would run this team better. The 3 Dumb Asses? Can we say that in here?


Yes, I’ve said that before- Moe, Larry and Curly would do a much better job. Even Shemp would be an improvement. And they’ve all been dead for 50+ years.


I’ll accept Shemp but never Curly Joe.


Several of the titles of the 3 Stooges shorts would apply to Jerry, Rick and Kenny. A few of the most apropos are:
3 Dumb Clucks
3 Little Twirps
3 Pests in a Mess
and my favorite- Idiots Deluxe

And one title sums up when Jerry will get rid of the team- I Can Hardly Wait.

Alfornia Jones

Lance looked pretty good after the first, but pretty much impossible to win any of his starts with this offense. They need to keep stretching Crochett out for next year, i would keep piggy backing him with Lynn and hopefully at some point Crochett is pitching 4 innings by end of the year.

How do we keep running TA out as the lead off hitter every game? He finally took a walk (1-2 BB’s are available every game). Shift everyone up two spots and move TA and AB down to 7-8. 600 OPS (under 300 obp) on June 13 is who he is this year, make the change until he proves otherwise.


Benintendi is at least getting on base – lots of BB – and takes good at bats. I would consider him at leadoff. Especially on a team where poor at bats are the norm and continue without any answer, don’t penalize the guy who actually seems to have an approach.


Crochet is in no way shape or form a starting pitcher. He was a reliever in college, he’s been a reliever in MLB who hasn’t really been as much of a multi-inning arm as people think (career 70.1 IP in 68 games). He’s not a fluid athlete and can’t repeat his delivery (just watch him, or look at the 12% career BB%). He’s coming off major injury and people want to push him into a new role?


How about that sight of Moncada jogging to first for his ‘base hit’ on the errant throw by the 2B?

Right Size Wrong Shape

How about it?


knowing a 4 run deficit early means you can turn the channel off and not miss anything makes being a fan really hard during the summer sports calendar. The team is boring, predictable and continues to display the same energy when things get off to a shaky start. We fans basically are being sold despite being bad we are close to a division title kind of…despite us knowing full well, currently they are not in 1st and havent really looked the part of a division leader for more then a game or two. yes the AL Central is terrible, but using that to spin hope and not the reality of “you still arent leading and cant seem to do much consistently to get back in this terrible division” just continues to show this franchise has no clue what is doing


Yeah, even if .500 wins the division, the Sox have shown no reason to believe that they could be a .500 team. I really don’t know what to think going forward. There is no way that this FO can be in charge of the next rebuild, but it’s becoming very obvious that this group of players is never going to win. My thinking has been go for it this year because it’s only going to get worse with this “core” moving forward. But I think we’re only kidding ourselves if we think this team can win the division. I have a hard time believing that they are anything more than a 75-win team- unless Timmy, Moncada, Lynn, etc. suddenly start playing like all-stars. And I’m not going to hold my breath waiting for that to happen.

Augusto Barojas

Assuming they lose one of the next two to LA, that will make them 2-11 in series outside the central. To get back to .500 would require they play 10 over from here. That is a pipe dream.

They are closer to a 90 loss team than a .500 team. They aren’t winning any division, not even this one. Trading guys that are leaving soon is the only sensible thing to do. It will also save them some money, so you know that is what Jerry will call for. Some may not want to sit through another rebuild, but when has Jerry ever cared what fans think?


After 50+ years of being a die-hard fan, if Jerry starts another rebuild with Hahn or Getz or anyone else in the organization, that may be the last straw.


That play where Vargas threw to the pitcher is hilarious! Why the hell, with Freeman standing on 1st, would the pitcher even be over there? And this is what it’s come down to being a Sox fan. Making fun of the winning, opposing team because they looked like the Sox for 1 play that didn’t matter.