White Sox 8, Guardians 2: One must-win won, more to come

Terry Francona gave the White Sox’s tiebreaker hopes a boost when he bumped back Triston McKenzie to start to rookie Hunter Gaddis, who gave up eight runs over 3⅓ innings in his first and only start a month ago.

The White Sox still had to hold up their end of the bargain by hitting an anonymous righty, which is something that can’t be taken as a given, but it proved to be little issue today. The Sox clobbered Gaddis for five homers over four consecutive innings while Lance Lynn pitched into the seventh. As a result, the Sox narrowed Cleveland’s lead in the AL Central to three games, and they still have a chance to win the season series with a sweep of next week’s three-game set.

It only looked dicey at the very beginning, when Lynn had to work around a one-out double and Yasmani Grandal whiffing on a José Ramírez pop-up for a scoreless first, followed by consecutive Cleveland doubles to start the second.

The latter inning was easier to absorb because the Sox punished Gaddis for three runs over the first three batters in the top of the second, even though Gaddis held the high ground in all three battles.

Eloy Jiménez fell behind 1-2, but drew a walk. Gavin Sheets fell behind 0-2, but fouled off five of the next seven pitches before sending the 10th pitch of the at-bat over the right-field wall for a two-run shot, and his first road homer of the year. Andrew Vaughn then made it back-to-back on an 0-2 count, even though it was a fastball up and in off the plate.

Lynn settled down to retire nine in a row, but Gaddis never settled. Or maybe the White Sox never did. Yoán Moncada crushed a full-count changeup over the deepest, highest part of the park for a 420-foot solo shot in the third. Yasmani Grandal leveled a center-cut cutter out to right in the fourth, and Elvis Andrus drove a thigh-high fastball out to center to make it a 6-1 game.

The Sox scored without the aid of a homer later that inning, with José Abreu following Moncada with the first of his two RBI singles on the day, and everybody could stand down for the rest of the afternoon. They’ll meet again next Tuesday. In between, the Sox have the easier task this weekend with three in Detroit before an off day on Monday, while the Guardians will host the Twins for five games over four days.

Bullet points:

*AJ Pollock made a nice diving catch in left field to give Kendall Graveman his first out in the ninth, which assuaged fears about another six-run comeback.

*The five homers offset the damage from three double plays.

*Lynn lowered his ERA to 3.99, even though Aaron Bummer allowed his inherited runner to score.

Record: 74-70 | Box score | Statcast

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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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Kevin

What is that smell? Could it be a whiff of….steak?

lifelongjd

Nice win. Don’t stop now boys

a-t

let’s go royals today and let’s go twins tomorrow

tommytwonines

I hope they win the division, but there’s still a chance for the Sox to catch the Rays and Orioles – they’ve got some tough games down the stretch.

jorgefabregas

Anything is possible, but the FG playoff odds give the White Sox a 17.2% chance of winning the division vs. a 2.0% chance of winning a wild card spot.

Shingos Cheeseburgers

And in the darkness a faint light flickers….

Right Size Wrong Shape

Sorry, I was just trying to light a fart.

a-t

Tigers have Manning, E-Rod, and Hutchinson slated to start. Manning’s been fine but not striking out many guys, E-Rod has not been very good since returning from his weird sabbatical, and Hutchinson is a AAAA talent. Giolito v Manning’s the only game of concern.

Joliet Orange Sox

If you really believe that there is nothing to worry about in the other two games against Detroit, I suggest you read the following:

Sox Machine Top 2022 Losses

Right Size Wrong Shape

Seriously. All games are games of concern.

charlie

Darn..was hoping you’d been banned from the site.

Right Size Wrong Shape

Charming as always.

charlie

Own it.

Right Size Wrong Shape

I realize you’re upset about Moncada’s big day yesterday, but stop being a weirdo. I didn’t do anything to provoke you.

charlie

Not surprised by the unwillingness to look at yourself.

a-t

What on earth are you talking about dude

charlie

Not directed to you.

Holland23

What if Tony doesn’t manage a game anymore this season (crosses fingers for never again), but we do win the World Series. He would still get the accolades, that would be weird.

denman

I, for one, would be perfectly okay with that weirdness.

ParisSox

If they win a World Series, I accept any oddities for the next 5 years.

gibby32

He would not get the accolades. Technically, he might be the “manager” of the World Series winner and hence be a 4-time World Series winning manager, but the accolades would go to Cairo. Further, I suspect that if LaRussa never manages again, MLB would after the fact adjust all of the records such that Cairo would get the wins, losses and titles.

MasGarcias

With the great offensive output under pressure, I had to assume Tony didn’t travel with the team. (I legitimately do not know if he did)
Please keep him away, far far away…

chipporter

Did anyone else notice the, pay no mind, attitude of Sheets when he cut in front of Pollack to catch the fly in right center? Pollack started a slight wtf look and Sheets didn’t even acknowledge his presence by turning to look at him.

I’ve been getting a vibe most of the season that Pollack isn’t one of the boys. I watched him at the plate the other day, no outs, down either 2 or 3, men on 1st and 2nd, and he’s not trying to move the runners over by hitting to the right side, he struck out on 3 pitches trying to jack one out of the yard. It’s stuff like that that I think gets noticed, playing for yourself rather than the team.

Maybe I’m just tilting at windmills here, but this is what my gut has been saying for awhile.

Right Size Wrong Shape

Gavin Sheets doesn’t strike me as the grudge holder type.

As Cirensica

Maybe I’m just tilting at windmills here

Probably this.

joewho112

Never attribute to malice that which can be adequately explained by ignorance. Sheets probably didn’t see/hear him

gibby32

That take runs counter to Pollock’s reputation, I believe.

chipporter

I never heard much about his reputation, which is neither good or bad.

a-t

The yearlong power outage has been a result of old-school crap like trying to move runners over with productive outs or whatever, which is what Tony was preaching. Per Rosenthal, the hitting coaches— and presumably Cairo too— are telling the whole team that they want to have guys jacking it out of the yard and to go up hunting for pitches to drive, which is why they’re homering twice as often under Cairo.

upnorthsox

Bullshit!!

mikeschach

so all we gotta do is win every time Cleveland does and sweep them. hard to believe it will happen. but would be a kick.

dsbatt

Actually, not quite. We are 4 back in loss column, but 3 out because we have played two extra games. So we will need a Cleveland loss in one of those games too.

Last edited 15 days ago by dsbatt
a-t

Really need Minnesota to not crap the bed this time like they did a week ago lol