No products in the cart.
Through one half-inning — or more specifically, 35 grueling Manny Bañuelos pitches — tonight’s game appeared to be one more slog to fittingly cap off what had been a brutal season series against the Washington Nationals.
If you had to judge this game by another half-inning, Aaron Bummer had a hellish eighth. He retired just one of the five batters he faced, plunking two of them. Two runs scored on his watch, and he left two more runners for the next man in.
And even with these sizable obstacles, the White Sox won this game and made it pretty fun, even if they almost squandered a five-run lead against the Nats for the second time this year.
Granted, this one didn’t leave the greatest of aftertastes. Alex Colomé had to bail out bummer one out into the eighth, then gave up his first run with an Anthony Rendon solo shot in the ninth, followed by a walk that brought the tying run to the plate. He needed 39 pitches to get it done, but at least there’s an off day tomorrow.
If you can set that aside, there was a lot else to like. Let’s take inventory:
No. 1: The White Sox stormed back immediately with the kind of two-out rally we’ve seen Bañuelos allow. After Corbin retired his first two batters of the game, Jose Abreu ripped a double off the left-field wall, followed by walks to James McCann and Eloy Jiménez. Up came Welington Castillo, who took advantage of a tight strike zone for his own 2-0 count. Corbin threw a fastball that Castillo on the outer half, Castillo extended, and he crushed the ball over the center-field wall for the Sox’ third grand slam of the year.
No. 2: Bañuelos didn’t allow any of those rallies himself. He allowed just a pair of singles from the second through fourth innings, and when Bañuelos missed with two chances to close out the fifth, Rick Renteria didn’t try to force a pitcher win out of it. He went to Evan Marshall, who got a lineout to end the inning, then pitched a scoreless sixth. He got the win instead.
No. 3: Eloy Jiménez hit his first homer in front of his fans, and he seemed like he wanted to make it memorable. He hit a 461-foot blast into Thome Territory over the batter’s eye, bouncing off the concourse and careening up the steps. As Grant Brisbee pointed out years ago, it’s damned hard to make a homer at Guaranteed Rate Field look dramatic, but outside of nailing a goose between the eyes, that might be as good as it gets.
No. 4: Jose Rondón and Jose Abreu teamed up for one of the plays of the year.
Tim Anderson also made an incredible ranging play in the seventh that was overturned by a challenge but still awesome, and Jiménez even found a way to lower the tension with a sliding catch after Colomé entered with two on in the eighth.
No. 5: Speaking of Jiménez, he played a part in the last three runs. Besides the monster shot in the fourth, he smashed a grounder through a drawn-in infield to make it 6-2, then stretched it into a double before scoring on Yolmer Sánchez’s single.
No. 6: Rick Renteria managed the game well. He didn’t stick with Bañuelos any longer than he had to, and he took advantage of tomorrow’s off day to use Colomé for the five-out save.
It could’ve been better, I suppose, but after three tough losses and a lopsided pitching matchup, I wouldn’t get greedy.
*Ryan Cordell whacked home plate umpire Chad Whitson with his backswing. Whitson stayed in the game once the bleeding stopped.
*Rondón played for Yoan Moncada, who was scratched after the back spasm that took him out of Monday’s game.