Pregame notes: White Sox try to stop the pressing to stanch the bleeding

Guaranteed Rate Field, home of the White Sox
(James Fegan / Sox Machine)

Pedro Grifol did not invent, nor bring a notable amount of innovation to the practice of major league managers saying that their players are pressing, and that simply relaxing will restore them to their career norms.

But in his answer to a Sunday pregame question about whether this is his handwriting Michael Soroka, Grifol did start to slip into the realm of grappling with the dread that comes with a team that cannot score.

“Where we get in trouble is a leadoff triple and thinking we’re going to lose the game when that guy scores,” Grifol said. “That’s where we start getting into trouble, as opposed to ‘You know what, I’m going to make good pitches now and if we give up that run, it’s still 1-0 and we’re in the game,’ as opposed to walking a couple guys because you don’t want that guy to score and you end up giving up four or five. That’s what’s important for us.”

Three years ago, Nicky Lopez went 22-for-23 on stolen bases in a fabulous 2021 performance that Grifol talked about trying to channel all spring. So far this year he’s 0-for-4, and his four caught stealings lead the league. However, Lopez said three of those incidences came on hit-and-runs, including a double steal where his main function was to be a decoy so Braden Shewmake could score.

“I have to be unselfish about it, giving myself up to get a run in,” Lopez said. “I’ve had some tough luck so far, but that’s baseball. Now it’s about what do we see, what Pedro puts on, green light, red light and just trust it.”

Paul DeJong is trying to be in his own head less, less focused on mechanics and more just reactive at the plate, which he feels leads to better swing decisions in the long run. I’ve talked to him about it and was going to use a quote, but he’s struck out in half of his 30 plate appearances, with chase and in-zone contact rates that would be the worst of his career so far, so maybe let’s wait a beat on that.

By any reasonable interpretation, Grifol did not say anything revealing about when Eloy Jiménez going out on a rehab assignment. But this is the sort of avoidant answer managers usually give right before a player heads out on a rehab assignment.

“He had a good session today. I’ll talk to James (Kruk) here now after we’re done here and talk to Eloy and see when that happens.”

First Pitch

TV: NBC Sports Chicago

Lineups:

RedsWhite Sox
Jonathan India, 2B1Robbie Grossman, RF
Will Benson, CF2Andrew Benintendi, LF
Christian Encarnacion-Strand, 1B3Andrew Vaughn, DH
Spencer Steer, LF4Gavin Sheets, 1B
Jake Fraley, RF5Korey Lee, C
Elly De La Cruz,. SS6Dominic Fletcher, CF
Jeimer Candelario, 3B7Lenyn Sosa, 3B
Nick Martini, DH8Paul DeJong, SS
Tyler Stephenson, C9Nicky Lopez, 2B
Graham AshcraftSPMichael Soroka
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FishSox

“Where we get in trouble is a leadoff triple and thinking we’re going to lose the game when that guy scores,” Grifol said. 

This is the culture he built, wear it.

As Cirensica

Finally, the culture can be measured.

Adam

For the love of god, Robbie Grossman is my favorite Sox hitter of the last 5 years. Anyone can hit homers. We finally have one hitter who can draw a walk

StockroomSnail

Nice read, Mr. Record Contract.

VAChisox

Let’s see, I could watch the White Sox or the final round of the Masters with Verne Lundquist’s final call. Touch choice

StockroomSnail

He seems a little too pro Happy Gilmore for me.

BillyKochFanClub

Another outstanding catch to rob a Sox hitter of extra bases. The only way the Sox will be able to score on the Cincy defense is HRs and the Sox don’t hit HRs, so we’re boned.

As Cirensica

that would be the worst of his career so far,

That’s a theme since Grifol took the reins of this team. All players suddenly having some sort of career worst at something. Grifol’s magic.

StockroomSnail

The Grifolian touch is my least favorite fable.

FishSox

Ok, have to ask, what’s your favorite?

StockroomSnail

I’m a white sox fan, it’s gotta be Grimm.

Jerrylocks and the search for the 3 WAR cost controlled talent?

bikeman

… but we’d trade him for a bag of magic beans 4 guys who might be good in 4 years.

StockroomSnail

4 bad players > one good player, basic reinsdorfian math

FishSox

Mathematically, that’s expressed as
$+$+$+$>$$$$$$$$$$$$

ParisSox

I believe that’s the Roger’s Theorem

As Cirensica

oh boy…Cincy scored 2 runs in the 3rd. Game over?

BenwithVen

**crunches the numbers**

…yes.

As Cirensica

How about 4 runs? Crunch it. Crunch it. Munch it.

StockroomSnail

I was debating “infield in?” in my head but why bother?

StockroomSnail

Did they ever show the play at the plate? I might have looked away.

As Cirensica

They did not. It was a brief pan with a terrible timing. I am switching to the Reds feed. This is unbearable.

StockroomSnail

How do they miss the play at the plate live AND never show it??

Last edited 1 month ago by StockroomSnail
As Cirensica

If you can’t see it, it never happened.

StockroomSnail

The white sox fan approach.

StockroomSnail

Lot of grumbling about correctly called strikes today.

bikeman

who do we have a guy batting .137 near the top of the order? (not to mention, why is he starting?)

As Cirensica

When you have many of them, it is bound to happen.

StockroomSnail

I don’t like that they are in the middle and end of the order too.

bikeman

hello Masters!

James Fegan

Scoring change gave an error to Lopez on the stolen base, for those tracking adherence to the FAST principles at home.

Last edited 1 month ago by James Fegan
As Cirensica

Seriously, how can Grifol survive past April? I can see a 3 – 20 record easily before April ends.

StockroomSnail

Shame alone should kill him.

Adam

You may be a touch optimistic. I’m not sure I see a third win. Might not be any 35 degree days left.

Chris

Easily… Jerry does not want to pay two managers at the same time.

As Cirensica

Nice assist for the 2B umpire. He had a better chance to tag out the runner than Nicky F.A.S.T. López

MattyV415

I’ll admit it – I was too optimistic on Lopez. I countered the people saying he’d have a 2 to 3 WAR season with my prediction that he’d end up closer to 0. Preseason optimism must have gotten the best of me there.

StockroomSnail

I love the sarcastic cheer for 1 run.

Adam

Wow, that was a Sheets level drop

As Cirensica

I fell sleep. Maybe the Red’s RF too. 2 runs? We are almost at our average.

As Cirensica

Impressive Soroka is still out there

As Cirensica

The Reds are stealing everything from Soroka.

As Cirensica

And we are back to 4 runs down.

As Cirensica

John Schriffen “Ashcraft allows .500 the 3rd time around”

^^^Grossman hits a laser^^^

“There you go” Something cooking here”

^^^Beninshitty hits for an easy double play. Inning over^^^

Womp womp

Last edited 1 month ago by As Cirensica
As Cirensica

They picked up a runner on 1st and he is still safe on 2nd with time to spare. Pathetic team.

As Cirensica

And Pedro loses a challenge

StockroomSnail

Pedro is consistent, the kind of steady shittiness you need to get the 10th pick.

Last edited 1 month ago by StockroomSnail
FishSox

My cubs buddy was remarking at how the Marlins were on par with the Sox. I let him know that the difference was, ours is sustainable.

aseballnut

I am officially hate watching.

funkerdan

you and probably everyone at the stadium not a Reds fan.. this would not be a fun one to attend (this… season…)

StockroomSnail

They are fun to root against.

FishSox

Welcome to the dark side, Luke.

StockroomSnail

These new/enforced interference rules are leading to comedic tag attempts.

As Cirensica

What is the record of stolen bases in a game? Asking for a friend.

Last edited 1 month ago by As Cirensica
StockroomSnail

Old friend Billy Hamilton had 7 in a game once.

The New York Highlanders have stolen the most bases by a team in a game, with 15 steals against the St. Louis Browns on September 28, 1911.

StockroomSnail

That sun in right killing dudes.

aseballnut

And center

StockroomSnail

And third base.

StockroomSnail

Infield in, ha.

aseballnut

Grossman over Colas. Why?

StockroomSnail

He takes walks!

LamarHoyt_oncrack

Because everybody in this organization who makes decisions is stupider than F.

StockroomSnail

BOOOOOO

funkerdan

our defense is top notch. I SAID TOP NOTCH

Member

Cue Yakety Sax.

Last edited 1 month ago by Member
StockroomSnail

Yakety Sox should be a thing.

As Cirensica

This is a top comedy. I am laughing.

StockroomSnail

Will the sox be swept or shut out more this year?

funkerdan

I’ll take shut out as there are more opportunities. though…. it might be close on sweeps.

StockroomSnail

I think shutouts is the safer bet, sweeps the more depressing option.

As Cirensica

I am waiting for the king of insults, when the opposing team uses a position player to eat innings while winning the game. I think it happened at least once in 2023.

Member

Yes.

As Cirensica

Who knows, but it’s good to have aspirations.

BuehrleMan

We’re going to lose.

FishSox

Who the hell is the Cincy OF coach and what the hell is he teaching those guys? Not a single one of them is pulling up short to safely play the ball on the hop. They’re all laying out and catching the ball, completely ignoring the fundamentals.

StockroomSnail

I bet their hitting coach encourages ball in air nonsense too.

ForsterFTOG

Grown men need to be taught how to uppercut now?

StockroomSnail

White sox players appear to operate with many deficiencies.

StockroomSnail

Is there an opposite to the one shining moment video? The white sox should make one when this year ends (Satan willing), but what to call it and song to set it to?

No shining moments, this impossible year by panic at the disco?

StockroomSnail

Oh shit, put on your rally cap, ITS VAUGHN (er, benintendi).

Last edited 1 month ago by StockroomSnail
As Cirensica

Is Benintendi allowed to do that?

upnorthsox

bases loaded and they hit one off the wall and only one scores.

As Cirensica

Technically sound

That’s the ‘T’ in the F.A.S.T. bullshit.

StockroomSnail

Feels like the ball has been up in the zone all day and a non-sox team would do more with it.

As Cirensica

That’s why Vaughn is untradable

StockroomSnail

We took it as a compliment, it was meant as an insult.

“Part of ‘the core,’ oh no….he’s like an apple core at lunch, untradeable”

I was at an auction for my kids’ school last night, and they were auctioning off some Sox tickets / parking passes. A guy at my table said, “Hey, you’re a Sox fan. You should bid on those!” as all eyes turn to me. I wanted to crawl under the table.

StockroomSnail

23 strikes again.

So, should my reaction right now be “Calm down, Tim Hill, those pitches weren’t strikes”, or “NBCSC probably has the strike zone thing messed up, because production has messed up everything else this year, so Hill is probably right to be mad.”?

bob

the box thing has looked low this year

StockroomSnail

A relatively good day for Tim Hill, even with the ejection.

ForsterFTOG

I hope for both of those things when I see Tim Hill warming up.

2024 Whtie Sox: The other team’s closer is just getting some work in.

StockroomSnail

Worst 15 game start in franchise history 🧦

As Cirensica

Worst run differential since something about the mounds
Worst season of…. in his career
Worst runs per game ever

Worst of…The Grifol years.