White Sox 7, Tigers 1: Reynaldo López finishes strong

Reynaldo López’s season can be described as up-and-down. It can be best described as “mostly down,” but he ended with an up by picking on the Detroit Tigers on the front end of a doubleheader.

After spending his previous start getting an earful from Rick Renteria, he heard nothing but cheers, at least after the first of eight-plus innings. He shook off a solo shot by Miguel Cabrera for the only run he allowed all afternoon, while the White Sox offense spread out its support throughout the affair.

López attacked, attacked, attacked. He issued just one walk on top of the five hits while striking out nine. He threw 75 of 105 pitches for strikes, and while his swinging strike total doesn’t reflect dominance, the lack of exit velocity reflects effectiveness. Good fastball command, along with one of his better sliders of the year, limited the Tigers to just three hard-hit balls all game.

The White Sox offense had a steadier supply of big hits. It took them a couple innings to figure out Matthew Boyd, but they finally stung him for two runs in the third, the first of three crooked numbers on the afternoon.

The inning opened with Harold Castro booting Yolmer Sánchez’s grounder to second, and he came around to score after singles by Adam Engel and Ryan Cordell. Both moved up a base on Leury García’s groundout, and while Danny Mendick’s popout couldn’t score them, #PASSEDBALLOFFENSE on a Jose Abreu walk put the Sox up 2-1.

An inning later, Sánchez reached with a legit double that scored Yoan Moncada all the way from first. Sánchez had to hold up on Engel’s single and only took third, and Cordell risked stranding him by popping up a questionable squeeze attempt. García atoned for Cordell’s sins by shooting a single through the right side.

The other runs scored with less stress. Mendick pulled and inside Edwin Jackson fastball over the wall in left for a two-run homer, and Eloy Jiménez followed him an inning later with a blast off the left-field foul pole for his 31st of the year.

Bullet points:

*Engel and Moncada both had less-than-stellar slides into home plate on their runs. Engel could be excused because he had to dive around Abreu’s bat, which he flipped in front of the plate before realizing the pitch got away. Moncada just jarted his shoulder into the first on his dive, and came up sore in his standard fashion.

*Mendick swung at ball four three different times, preventing him from drawing his first career walk. The first time was OK because he ended up notching his second homer, but he grounded into a double play after extending his final plate appearance.

*The White Sox drew four walks against seven strikeouts versus Boyd, while López and Kelvin Herrera struck out 11 Tigers against one walk. Herrera retired all three batters he faced, two by strikeout, as the only reliever needed in the front half of the doubleheader.

Record: 71-88 | Box score | Highlights

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Jim Margalus
Jim Margalus

Writing about the White Sox for a 16th season, first here, then at South Side Sox, and now here again. Let’s talk curling.

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Yolmer's gatorade

Mendick has the same number of home runs in 13 games that Yolmer has in in 147 games, which might give him an edge over Yolmer going into next season.

MrStealYoBase

He also costs 90% less.

lil jimmy

the long term plan isn’t Danny. It’s Yolbert.

Smclean09

No reason for the min not to let Mendick have a say in that

Trooper Galactus

Great pitching today from two guys who really needed to end the season on a high note. Here’s hoping Lopez finds some consistency in 2020 and that Herrera can come back fully healthy and continue to improve on that cutter.

roke1960

Herrera can be a huge part of that bullpen next year if he can bring this good finish into next year.

lil jimmy

Well, he’s going to be in the bullpen. Hope he earns his pay.

Yolmer's gatorade

They were saying on the first game broadcast that the foot injury prevented him from doing his leg workouts which lead to his struggles. Hopefully, he can come back fully healthy next year.

Smclean09

Stretch