White Sox 5, Red Sox 2: Another surprising series victory

White Sox 5, Red Sox 2: Another surprising series victory

The White Sox gave away Saturday’s game to set up a rubber match, but they ended up taking the series by winning on the margins.

Reynaldo Lopez outpitched Rick Porcello, but the White Sox also outdefended the Red Sox, and they outhustled them, too.

Take Tim Anderson, for instance. The box score says he went 0-for-2, but he still factored into a three-run difference. At the plate, he drew a pair of walks — one with the bases loaded in the third, and one with the bases empty in the sixth. He came around to score with the latter one, and without the benefit of the hit. A Charlie Tilson bunt moved him to second, and he made it the rest of the way on a Trayce Thompson grounder to the right side. Rick Porcello had to race to beat Thompson (who was busting it in his own right), and he stumbled over the bag and crashed at the feet of the first-base umpire. Anderson, whose momentum toward home hadn’t entirely stopped, resumed running and slid safely to put the Sox ahead 31.

And right before Anderson drew the leadoff walk, he ended the bottom of the fifth with a fine ranging play to his right, including a strong throw that had enough to beat a diving Xander Bogaerts. That prevented a runner from third for scoring, so there are three impact plays in a three-run game.

The White Sox didn’t play flawless ball. Yoan Moncada fumbled a routine three-hopper to the right side that should’ve ended the seventh, but resulted in Boston narrowing the lead to 3-2. Fortunately, Jace Fry induced a popup  to end the inning, then handled the eighth by himself, too.

But the Red Sox made their own mistakes.

The White Sox were able to take a 2-1 lead in the third because Rafael Devers whiffed catching the throw from second on what should’ve been a 4-5-3 double play ball. Abreu took third on the play, and eventually Porcello plunked Matt Davidson and walked Anderson to give the Sox a 2-1 lead.

Likewise, Mitch Moreland started the sixth with a deep drive to center. He rounded first base like he’d homered, but it hit the center of the wall, and Thompson played the carom well to hold Moreland to single. That came into play when J.D. Martinez grounded into a 5-4-3 double play the next batter up.

And in the ninth, Moncada reached when his single deflected off the foot of Matt Barnes, and Moreland couldn’t catch Barnes’ flip to first cleanly with the bare hand. Moncada was originally ruled out, but a challenge overturned the call. He moved to second on a groundout, and when Alex Cora intentionally walked Abreu, Daniel Palka made them pay with a double to the left-center gap. Moncada scored, and so did Abreu. A good relay would have beat Abreu by plenty, but with two outs, Nick Capra wagered on an imperfect one, and the White Sox put it out of bloop-and-a-blast range.

Throw in Davidson cutting down Devers on a play at the plate in the second inning to keep the score tied at 1, and the White Sox executed enough to win.

The same can be said for Lopez, who picked up his second with by getting the game into the seventh, doing a lot of damage with his fastball. He pitched 6⅓ innings, allowing just two runs (one earned) on six hits and three walks. The walks were contained to chunks of the third and sixth innings, when he lost his release point. The six strikeouts made up for it.

Bullet points:

*The White Sox bullpen pitched 8⅔ innings of scoreless ball over the three-game series.

*Abreu put the Sox ahead 1-0 in the first with his league-leading 25th double.

*Both teams were just 1-for-11 with runners in scoring position.

*The White Sox have taken series from the team with the best record in the National League and the best record in baseball on consecutive weekends.

Record: 22-41 | Box score


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jorgefabregas
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Every send is a good send.

GoGoSoxFan
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GoGoSoxFan

In general I agree with this, but sending Sherman Lollar in game 2 of the ’59 World Series proves there’s an exception to every rule.

gatzman
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gatzman

19 games under BUT they are playing much better ball. Joe Sheehan talks about how terrible teams can put together good 20 game stretches but this feels more like a team starting to find a bit better gear.

Trooper Galactus
Member

Dylan Covey has certainly gone a long way toward stabilizing the pitching side. Between Fulmer, Giolito, and the Santiago/MiGo starts, the bullpen was getting way overworked in addition to giving the team almost no chance of winning.

sgp2204
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sgp2204

Looks like we have 3 legit starters right now. That’ll definitely help the bullpen. 

Trooper Galactus
Member

I’d say four. Shields isn’t looking pretty all the time, but he’s been hanging in there. With him, Rodon, Covey, and Lopez all dealing, we’re only a Michael Kopech promotion away from having at least a passable 1 thru 5.

AirTrafficAJ
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AirTrafficAJ

Shields at least goes 6 more often than not.

Trooper Galactus
Member

Yup. Even if he’s giving up gobs of runs, he’s at least getting the innings in.

lil jimmy
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lil jimmy

The Lefties in the bull pen deserve a shout out. Xavier Cedeno, added to Fry and Avilan is an embarrassment of riches.(Bummer in the wings)

GrinnellSteve
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GrinnellSteve

Beltin’ Bill compared Palka to Paul Bunyan from Game of Thorns.

Anderson’s scoring play was a marvel.

PauliePaulie
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PauliePaulie

I’m so confused.

tommytwonines
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tommytwonines

Was Devers playing third?  Maybe should say he whiffed on a “4-5-3” potential double-play ball? Or was it a 6-5-3? Didn’t see the play or the shifts. 

No big deal I’m just saying. 

Gutteridge70
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Gutteridge70

All that nay saying about the rebuild? i did say if the Sox could score the starting pitching and bullpen could get us 2 out of 3. It would have been 3 out of 3 if the Sox did not sink Rodon with 2 unearned runs on Saturday. Beating the best team in baseball with better coaching , pitching and just enough offense . Good job Ricky ,Coop and the pitching staff and the 4 AAA players in the lineup who beat those snotty name stealing Bostonians in their overpraised dump of a ballpark Satisfying weekend.

CarolinaSoxFan
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CarolinaSoxFan

Well said. I don’t mind the team or the ballpark, but to me their fans are even more insufferable than Yankee fans.