Twins 14, White Sox 4: Kepler and Cruz continue to dominate Sox pitching

It was an excellent start to the evening for the White Sox. Tim Anderson gave them the lead with an RBI double, and a couple of batters later, Jose Abreu hit his 28th home run of the season. Anderson would hit a solo home run later in the game, his 13th of 2019, and the two hitters continue their recent offensive surges in August.

Every other phase of the game was ugly, and it leads to another blow out loss to Minnesota with the Twins winning, 14-4.

Reynaldo Lopez had the start and was in a good rhythm early. Able to get through the first two innings with clean results, and was working with a three-run lead in the bottom of the third inning. With a man on third base and two outs, Lopez tried to double up offspeed pitches to Max Kepler. He was able to wait back long enough to get the barrel on the ball hitting his 34th home run of 2019.

Down by just one run, Nelson Cruz would tie it in the fourth inning with a solo home run, his 33rd of 2019. Both Kepler and Cruz have hit eight home runs against the White Sox this season. They wouldn’t stop hitting after their home runs. Lopez got Kepler to hit a check-swing grounder in front of home plate. Welington Castillo was able to field the ball and make a throw to first base for what it seemed the third out. Instead, Abreu dropped the throw allowing the inning to continue.

After providing the game-tying hit, Cruz delivered the go-ahead smash with a double right field scoring two runs. The next pitch, Eddie Rosario hit a single through the shift, and suddenly the Twins had a 7-3 lead. Lopez was able to get through the sixth inning finishing with a line of 6 IP 6 H 7 R 3 ER 0 BB 3 K keeping his season ERA to 5.25.

While Abreu’s error was quite costly, the game became a laugher in the eighth inning as the Twins hitters beat up Kelvin Herrera and Hector Santiago for seven runs. Kepler, Miguel Sano, and CJ Cron all doubled, and Jorge Polanco homered to put an exclamation point on the Twins victory.

Game Notes:

  • Kelvin Herrera only last 0.2 innings giving up five earned runs which pushes his season ERA to 8.00.
  • Leury Garcia, Ryan Goins, and Yolmer Sanchez hit singles.
  • Nelson Cruz is hitting .528/.564/1.333 against the White Sox this season with 8 home runs and 20 RBI. Max Kepler is not too far off hitting .385/.419/1.103 with the same amount of homers and RBIs.

Record: 56-69 | Box Score | Highlights

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Josh Nelson
Josh Nelson

Josh Nelson is the host and producer of the Sox Machine Podcast. For show suggestions, guest appearances, and sponsorship opportunities, you can reach him via email at josh@soxmachine.com.

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dwjm3

The man who brought us Kelvin Herrera might want to worry less about Twitter and more about his talent acquisition skills.

burning-phoneix

I mean, he also got Colome,McCann, Nova and Marshall. Herrera was also pitching will early in the season but then got a lat strain or a back strain or something and just imploded.

Trooper Galactus

Colome cost us a catcher who’s currently hitting .287/.361/.464 who has three more years of control vs. Colome’s one, so that’s not exactly a big feather in Hahn’s cap. I also can’t shake the feeling that McCann is pretty much just a lucky break for him on a cheapo move than an actual scouting win.

Marshall, well, is starting to succumb to regression that his peripherals said were coming.

But let’s face it, even if you credit him with good gets in these guys, they don’t outweigh the awfulness brought on by Herrera and Alonso.

burning-phoneix

No, Colome cost us at best a DH who hits similarly to James McCann. Narvaez has no business being behind the plate.
Would a DHing White Sox Narvaez be pretty good right now? Yeah, sure. But without trading him the bullpen would be a complete disaster zone.

As for Marshall, even if he regresses completely to his FIP (which he won’t), he’d still be above average. The juiced ball has completely destroyed traditional reliever expectations.

4 good pickups for two stinkers is pretty good in my book.

Trooper Galactus

Yeah, Narvaez would be our best DH in some time, he was the only guy who ran what could be considered a good OBP year after year, and he has two years of control beyond Colome. Sorry, but trading four years of arguably your best hitter for two years of a closer when the first year (and possibly the second) is non-competitive is just plain dumb.

And no, those four pickups do not negate the bad from the two awful ones, never mind that you’re omitting Jay, who has also been pretty bad.

roke1960

We can’t just judge Hahn on this year. How about Jeff Keppinger, Adam LaRoche, the Samardzija trade, and the fact that he had to trade 3 guys on team friendly contracts because he couldn’t surround them with a decent team? And Nova was dreadful the first half of the year. If Colome, Marshall, Nova and McCann is a great offseason, then our standards are incredibly low and we will continue to flounder under this inept GM.

burning-phoneix

2013-2016 I’ll put on Hahn (Though I don’t know if a “core” that included Adam Eaton was gonna go anywhere.) but I really can’t judge a rebuild so early on.

roke1960

It’s just sad that we’ve seen 7 straight losing seasons and the same guy is in charge. I really, really hope this rebuild produces a World Series champion. But with the same guys in charge who made the bad decisions that forced the rebuild, I’m not very excited about it happening. Let’s hope he has a good offseason. This is the most critical offseason of the rebuild.

texag10

This is probably a terrible attitude but I just have zero expectations for this offseason. Maybe he swings a 3 way trade to get us some blocked stud like with the original Eaton trade but there was the potential for that this last offseason and we sat on our hands. I hope to proven wrong but every signal I’m getting from this FO is we are just rolling with our internal prospects as the “stars” of this team. Any FA additions will be in support of those players, nothing more.

lil jimmy

What if Colome was pitching like Herrera? Now that would have led to a long season.

burning-phoneix

But he isn’t pitching like Herrera?

burning-phoneix

Yeah, I am leaving out Jay.That’s true. But I’m also leaving out Cordero, who looks like a nice steal from the Nats.

I’m curious on why you think two bad players are worse than 4 good ones? What Metric are you using? I mean by rWAR alone McCann has eclipsed the negatives of Alonso, Herrera and Jon Jay by himself.

iowasox1971

According to a tweet from the Sun-Times beat writer, Renteria was blaming Castillo for the play on which Abreu was charged with the error in the fifth. Renteria said Castillo didn’t throw the ball enough to the infield side of the bag, causing Abreu to try and “get it and save his arm at the same time.” Renteria added that Castillo “knew he had time to make a better throw.”

Renteria doesn’t throw players under the bus too often, so if this means Castillo is on his way out, fine with me.

In any event, Lopez did a pathetic job of pitching around the error. Good pitchers find a way to minimize the damage, not give up four “unearned” runs.

Whoom

I thought the same thing watching the play. It was on the inside of the line, and the throw ended up in foul territory causing Abreu to reach back across the bag – right in front of a charging Kepler.

Now, it hit his glove, and he SHOULD have caught it. But it was clear that he started pulling his arm as the ball got there. It was a shitty throw on a fairly easy play.

jose robcada

am i the only one that was disappointed with eloys effort on defense in the 5th before the inning exploded on that single right before the abreu error? maybe its just me overthinking things but it seemed like he was standing there for like 2 full seconds waiting for the hop when he probably could have went and got it to end the inning

jose robcada

i mean i dont wanna be too hard on the kid since hes a rookie and not known for his D but holy crap his rdrs is -12 in just 744 innnings

too put that into perspective schwarber has a -4 in 866 innings

so ya its pretty pathetic, prolly once a week i see a game and im like ya theres no way we can have him out there next year/2021 when we are actually trying to compete, hes a dh if i ever saw one

iowasox1971

After appearing to improve on defense for a few weeks, Eloy has regressed again. He has been especially brutal on this road trip. I would double the amount of pregame practice he has in the outfield, and I would make it mandatory that he have an extra month of practice just taking fly balls and working on outfield play during the offseason.
I don’t agree with making him a DH or first baseman right now. Those positions usually are reserved for older players or guys like Harold Baines with bad knees, etc. Eloy is a young player and there is still time to make him into a decent outfielder, if he works at it. I don’t know what Aaron Rowand is doing these days, but it might help to have him work with Eloy for a few weeks in the offseason.

Trooper Galactus

Most of the PA’s from our pathetic DH spot in the lineup have come from older players. Just put Eloy where he’ll be most valuable, period. Keep trying him in the outfield, but damn, if you get any sort of other, decent option for left field, just get him outta there.

Trooper Galactus

It was mentioned before that he’s basically a right-handed 2018 Daniel Palka this year, which seems disturbingly accurate overall. Obviously he’s much younger and has much more potential, but man, between injuries and poor performance this has been a pretty disappointing season for a guy we all thought would contend for ROTY.

HallofFrank

I had high hopes too, but he’ll likely finish with around an .800 OPS and 30 HR. In reality, that’s probably close to a median outcome for him for his rookie season as a 22 year old. It’s roughly the production of Vlad Jr, too, for what it’s worth. I do expect a good leap forward in 2020, though. 

Trooper Galactus

His OPS right now is .772, which equates to an OPS+ of 101. His wRC+ is 100. He’s been as average a hitter as can be, which is bad when you’re a catastrophically bad left fielder. The run scoring environment this season makes what would usually be a decent OPS quite pedestrian in reality.

HallofFrank

Sure. My point is that being a league average hitter with “quite pedestrian” stats was likely a median outcome, or close to it, for a 22 year old rookie.

I think we, maybe, could have reasonably expected a little more than this, but not much. 

roke1960

Remember back to the end of last season when some people on here were calling Moncada a bust? Eloy will be a monster next year. But I agree that getting a left fielder in addition to a right fielder should be a priority, so Eloy can move to DH and play 150+ games, instead of getting hurt 3 or 4 times in the outfield.

lil jimmy

or just three good outfielders. something lacking for a long, long time.

roke1960

Well, I’m assuming Robert will be in center, at least by May.

Trooper Galactus

I never said he was a bust, I just said he’s had a pretty bad year.

roke1960

I agree he’s had a pretty average year offensively, but I expect him to do like Moncada did in the off season, and make the necessary adjustments to be a force next year. Which is why Robert should be up, so he can get a taste of major league and then adjust in the offseason.

Trooper Galactus

I am optimistic he will improve and get consistently good at the plate. I’m just not so sure he’s gonna be quite the monster we had been hoping for.

digger0910

Dude. It is dour city around here right now. “Abreu stinks,” “Eloy is a disappointment”. Arguing about Narvaez. Everyone is entitled to it, but damn. Dark days, man. 

One day in the future we will be good, it will feel fucking amazing, and we’ll all have a huge group cheers and enjoy our beers/Spindrift/horchata/margs/kombucha/whatever you’re into while watching the beloved White Sox together. 

roke1960

I sure hope so. I hope Hahn wins Executive of the Year next year after signing Cole, Grandal and a few other studs, and the Sox win the division.

texag10

Four Loko Seltzers all around!

digger0910

I’ll bring the Yoo-hoos