It’s never easy to lose, but losing to one of your biggest rivals is even harder to take.
So it really irritates me when we come out on the short end against the Twins, which we did last night for the second day in a row. Just hate to watch them celebrate.
To the neutral observer it was a good game, a 3-2 pitching duel between two hot hurlers (Mark Buehrle and Carl Pavano) played in under two hours. To me, when it comes to the Sox, I’d rather watch a poorly played game and have the Sox win.
While the third-place Twinkies gained another game on the Pale Hose, the good news came from Cleveland as the Tribe swept a twinbill from the Tigers, now a game and a half behind the first-place Sox.
The two consecutive losses is not a major downer. After the great run we’ve had in the past two months it was inevitable there would be some kind of letdown. Remember, after the 11-game streak we lost two of three to the Royals before starting another run.
Two in a row is one thing. I’m not so crazy about making it three, so today I’m looking forward to us rebounding behind steady Freddy Garcia, who will be shooting for win No. 10.
Note of the day: Word is that 2005 World Champ Joe Crede is rounding into shape and will attempt a comeback in 2011 if not later this year. Wish him the best wherever he plays. All ’05 Sox have lifetime immunity with me and my Sox posse.
With the All-Star Game break, the blog has been dark for the past three days. But the Sox are back in action today–and so am I.
Here are a few thoughts as the Sox attempt to continue the surge that moved them into the A.L. Central lead after Sunday’s win against the Royals.
–The Sox have reported that Jake Peavy‘s surgery yesterday could not have gone better. Jake, see you in Glendale.
–The South Siders’ No. 1 draft pick, Chris Sale (pictured below), has been promoted from Class A Winston-Salem to AAA Charlotte after only four one-inning stints. Seems like he’s doing his Daniel Hudson imitation, only quicker. He could be in Chicago before too long.
–Those Adam Dunn to the White Sox rumors continue. Reports are that the Nationals are holding out for Gordon Beckham. If that’s the case, it won’t happen. Beckham’s 2010 struggles aside, Gordo is a keeper and the Sox know it.
–I haven’t seen it reported anywhere, but if the acquisition of Dunn doesn’t materialize–and I think Prince Fielder is out of the question–how about adding Raul Ibanez as a lefty bat in the Sox lineup? I’ve always liked him (actually hated him) because of his great success against the Sox over the years. Word is that the Phils wouldn’t mind parting with Raul.
–The Sox are hoping to start a new tradition tonight at Target Field. A tradition of dominating the Twins on their home field. The pitching matchups for the weekend:
TONIGHT: John Danks vs. Kevin Slowey
TOMORROW NIGHT: Gavin Floyd vs. Francisco Liriano
SATURDAY NIGHT: Mark Buehrle vs. Carl Pavano
SUNDAY: Freddy Garcia vs. Nick Blackburn
–After the four games in Minnesota, the Sox play three in Seattle, enjoy an off day and then travel to Oakland for three before returning home on July 26 vs. the Mariners.
For White Sox fans who didn’t survive last night’s rain delay, and heard this morning that the South Siders committed five errors, likely thought it had to be a sloppy, disappointing loss. But it wasn’t the case for these red-hot Sox, who have now won 21 out of their last 25.
Despite the five miscues the Sox won in neat fashion, taking their third straight from the Angels, 5-2, and claiming their fourth consecutive victory overall behind steady Freddy Garcia‘s ninth victory. They now have vaulted into second place, a game behind the Tigers and a half-game ahead of the Twins.
If winning despite five errors isn’t strange enough, then how about Brent Lillibridge being the DH and driving in a pair runs? The once-laughing stock of the Sox roster is now hitting .429 since being called up from Charlotte. He was joined by a team effort offensively with every man in the starting lineup getting at least one hit. Alexei Ramirez, Alex Rios and Paul Konerko had two apiece with Paulie driving in a pair of runs.
Peavy: He Gone?
I’m not burying the lead, it’s just that we’ve got to move on. Will the Sox miss Jake Peavy if he is indeed lost for the season? Undoubtedly, but it doesn’t help to whine. The hope is that Dan Hudson (or someone else that Kenny Williams acquires before the trade deadline) will be good enough to minimize the loss.
“Dr. Andrews, it’s Jake Peavy…I need your help.”
The opener of the Ranger series started with a two hour and 25 minute rain delay last night in Arlington…
The Sox treaded water behind another fine performance by Freddy Garcia…
Until tying up the game 3-3 in the seventh inning on an RBI single by Alex Rios and a Paul Konerko sac fly…
Then the South Siders finished the comeback in the ninth as Mark Kotsay doubled in two runs that proved to be the difference in the 5-3 win. It kept the Sox just two games back of the Twins and a game behind the Tigers.
A nice way to begin the July 4th weekend against one of the hottest teams in baseball.
Michael Young (.316 BA, 11 HR, 51 RBI), Ian Kinsler (.294), Josh Hamilton (18, 58, .343), Vlad Guerrero ( 18, 68, .339), Nelson Cruz (10, 39, .319) and Elvis Andrus (.296, 22 SB) comprise the dynamic offensive core of the first-place Texas Rangers, who now hold a 4 1/2 game lead in the A.L. West.
They also represent the huge challenge the White Sox have this weekend as they look to stay close in the A.L. Central after losing two of three to Kansas City on the heels of demolishing their National League opponents.
Sure, the Sox will have to score some runs to match the Rangers prolific attack, but in the end the burden will rest with the Sox starters, who need to minimize the damage for the South Siders to compete.
We will be counting on Freddy Garcia, John Danks and Mark Buehrle to get the job done. The last thing we need is to lose ground after we’ve gotten within 2 1/2 games of the division lead.
The weekend series in Arlington, which begins tomorrow night after today’s off day, is not do or die for the Sox, but it will say a lot about what we can realistically expect going forward.
Freddy, Danks and Mr. Perfect will attempt to quell the Ranger offense
Whether it was planned that way or not, Richie Cunningham (Ron Howard in real life) was the perfect choice to throw out the ceremonial first pitch tonight at the Cell. After all, for White Sox fans the last couple of weeks have certainly been Happy Days with the Sox now 1 1/2 behind first place Minnesota and tied with Detroit for second.
After the thrilling 3-2 victory over the North Side Media Darlings, the Sox winning streak is now at 11 while winning 15 of 16. Freddy Garcia, with a strong seven innings, continued his pitching excellence, J.J. Putz pitched a scoreless eighth for the win and Matt Thornton earned his third save. It was Paul Konerko’s 403-foot blast in the eighth that broke a 2-2 tie.
In addition to the streak continuing, the Sox clinched the first Crosstown Cup with a game to go in the series with the Media Darlings–and celebrated afterwards. They’re also 15-2 against the National League in interleague play.
The best part of tonight for me was being at the Cell. Electric and exciting. The Sox feel they can’t lose and the fans believe them. Nights like these are why we got hooked on this team in the first place.
After an 8-1 road trip and six victories in a row the Sox will arrive home to play the Braves on Tuesday as a .500 team. And despite winning against mediocre teams like the Cubs, Pirates and Nationals, it looks like we’ve turned the corner with solid play (and no homers in eight straight games). I have to admit I had serious doubts it would happen this season.
Freddy Garcia won his eighth game today in the 6-3 win over the Nationals and Alex Rios and Paul Konerko continued their assault on major league pitchers. Between them they were 5 for 10 with five RBI. And this could be the most telling stat of all: The Sox starters are 9-1 with a 1.95 ERA in their last 12 games.
“Today’s game might be the biggest game all year,” Ozzie told reporters after the game. “We got a chance to be .500 and go back home and continue to play the way we want to play…a couple of weeks ago were in a lot of trouble, but now (we’re) getting the players’ confidence back and giving the team some hope.”
Hey guys, don’t stop now.