Guardians 4, White Sox 2: Swinging away swings the game

Steven Kwan led off the fifth inning of a 2-2 game with a single off Mike Clevinger. Andrés Giménez then followed with a terrible bunt attempt on a 1-0 count that nearly resulted in a popout to Yoán Moncada in foul territory.

Undeterred, Giménez tried another bunt, and once again popped it foul to the left side for strike two.

That forced Giménez to swing the bat, which he should’ve been doing all along as the No. 2 hitter. He took a changeup in the dirt, then got a piece of an outside changeup to stay alive.

After three consecutive changeups, Clevinger tried to heat him upstairs. He hit his spot, but Giménez beat him to it, and turned that fastball into a two-run homer that proved decisive.

That’s how it’s going for the White Sox, who lost their fifth consecutive game in standard fashion. They scored in one inning and one inning only, and even though they posted a crooked number, it still managed to disappoint.

The Guardians had notched single runs off Clevinger in the first two innings, but Logan Allen, who took a comebacker off his lower leg in the second, came out misfiring in the third. He walked Trayce Thompson, then gave up a single to Oscar Colás and a double to Elvis Andrus that made it a 2-1 game with runners on second and third. Allen then walked Tim Anderson and Andrew Benintendi on nine pitches combined to tie the game.

Allen couldn’t get his fastball over, so he stopped throwing it, and that did the trick. He alternated changeups and sweepers to Luis Robert Jr. for a four-pitch strikeout, and then dangled those pitches low and away to Andrew Vaughn, resulting in another K. Yoán Moncada put the ball in play, but it was a weak bouncer to short, and Allen prevented the Sox from taking the lead.

Potentially rallies were snuffed out by the Guardians’ defense, including two more sliding catches by Will Brennan in right field and three double plays. The last one was a killer. Benintendi and Robert started the eighth with singles against Trevor Stephan, but Vaughn struck out again, and Moncada grounded to short again for a 6-4-3 twin killing.

The Guardians held on for the win despite losing Terry Francona in the fourth inning to an ejection from righteous indignation. Bryan Rocchio led off the inning with a sinking liner to right field that hit the turf before Thompson got there. Thompson knocked it down, but he slid past it, so Rocchio turned to second.

Thompson did a nice job of recovering and making an on-target throw, but Rocchio beat it with a slide to the third-base side of the bag, with his hand maintaining contact … until Tim Anderson’s tag knocked it off.

Third-base umpire Malachi Moore, who rotated to cover the plate, was standing right over the play when he made the “safe” call, so at first glance, it didn’t seem like he was interested in Anderson’s shenanigans. But he also didn’t make the gesture that Anderson had pushed Rocchio off the bag, so the White Sox challenged the play, and New York overturned the call.

Had Moore definitively ruled that Anderson forced Rocchio to lose contact after his momentum came to a rest, the call wouldn’t have been reviewable. Because Moore made a simple safe-out call and did not signal the play dead after Anderson made contact, the Sox sent the play to the review center, which apparently isn’t allowed to provide the same discretion.

Francona wasn’t happy after the game.

After the game, Francona appeared just as upset about the missed call as he was irate over Moore’s response to the protest.

“When you make a call that hideous, you can’t be arrogant, you can’t be throwing your hands up in the air,” Francona said. “He was two feet from there. He needs to practice more.”

But the Guardians still won.

Bullet points:

*Yasmani Grandal was charged with a throwing error on a Myles Straw stolen base that allowed him to advance to third. He scored on a wild pitch.

*Jimmy Lambert and Bryan Shaw combined for three scoreless innings out of the pen. The nice thing about this losing streak being on the road is that the pitching staff only needs to cover eight innings.

Record: 43-68 | Box score | Statcast

Take a second to support Sox Machine on Patreon
Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

Everything fell apart for the Sox this year once Clevinger showed up. Yes a hundred other things have gone wrong, but I’m convinced that’s where it all started.


Everything fell apart for the Sox this season the moment the new League year started and Reinsdorf, Hahn and Williams were still in charge.

Augusto Barojas

I got criticized for suggesting that Clevinger’s sleazy reputation was probably significant in why they couldn’t trade him, but I know I’m far from the only person that sees him or his name and thinks “yuck”.

I sure hope they pass on his option. He may have a hard time finding a team that will take him.



Last edited 1 month ago by soxygen

We have (or had before the trades) multiple players cheating on their wives. The whole team fell apart when Abroo left. He was holding the clubhouse together.


I’d say the troubles started around 1981.


For some historical parallelism it would be nice if we could end all of the troubles with some kind of Good Friday Agreement that Jerry will sell the team and take all of these clowns with him.


The Troubles.

Trooper Galactus

Given his reputation even before the domestic abuse came to light, making him their biggest pitching add of the offseason rendered all their crowing about building a team culture pretty laughable.


Discount Douchebags R’ Us


I feel like clevinger fits in well with this sox team. Who’s likeable? Outside of older rookies like Remillard or Scholtens. Santos too. So 3/26. The rest are hateable.

But overall signing a 5th starter who has a 3.72 is the least of their worries. 14 position players with no focus, discipline, effort or general idea of how to play baseball….that’s a bigger issue.


I agree, Jim. Only having to go 8 innings pitched on the road will save this staff in the long run.


What long run?


1) thanks for providing the link to the CLE paper & their article/video

2) good for Tim for stealing an out- worst that can happen is they (correctly) rule him safe

3) I dig Francona and always will. Recently there’s been whispers of him being a shi%*y father but not knowing the man nor his sons, I maintain my fondness for him. He’s one of countless ppl Sox couldve extremely feasibly hired in the post-Ozzie era.

Trooper Galactus

I wanted Matt Quatraro, and while the Royals absolutely suck, it’s hard to fault him for that given the complete lack of investment in the team. And to his credit, he currently has them on a 7-game winning streak that’s two games longer than anything the White Sox have mustered this year. Must be all that culture building he’s doing.


If I recall correctly, Francona was managing in the Sox system in the ’90s and won a couple of minor league ‘mgr-of-the-year’ awards. When it was time to replace Gene Lamont, Schueler picked Terry Bevington over Tito…. I don’t know if that’s exactly correct – maybe I can get a little help on why Francona wasn’t promoted ?


He was managing in Birmingham when Jordan had his baseball dalliance.


How did he not end up in Chicago over Bevington ?


Not that it matters because context is key, but its not great when 2022 will be considered one of the top 3 seasons of the last decade…Jerry needs to do the right thing and hire expensive people to run this team. In every aspect of the org too, no short cuts, CEO/Marketing/Media. Obviously baseball operations. If they say we are moving the AAA affiliate to a suburb, he hires an expensive person who signs off on it type stuff. He has to step away but full step away, no more Reinsdorfing this. Just hire someone to make the opposite of what he would do decisions. The process used now is just stale and doesn’t work in modern sports. Especially in a top media market, regardless of the Cubs dominate presence. They sold a contention window and this is the garbage that is acceptable with those expectations is the message right now. In the worst division in the history of the sport possibly…its simply painful thinking Jerry is going to let this madness continue lol

Trooper Galactus

Maybe it’s just the cynic in me, but I would think hiring richer, more expensive people would just result in an even more tone-deaf organization that’s even further removed from feeling any accountability to their fan base.


Anyone think that KC is gonna catch the Sox?


They are tank lions playing with their food. Just when you think they’ll catch us and eat us, they’ll toss us aside like some stale salad.