Tagged: Loss

July 28th Postgame – Buehrle Sets Record, But Sox Lose Game

The Sox lost another game in Minnesota tonight.

You don’t have a pulse if you didn’t have a nervous feeling while following this game. Buehrle lit up the sports world again as he brought a perfect game into the 6th inning, one start after making history against Tampa Bay. Mark still made history by breaking the major league record for consecutive batters retired when setting a new record at 45 (a streak that was snapped in the 6th after giving up a walk. The walk happened on a full count, and I thought Casilla swung at strike three, but the home plate umpire said he checked his swing). The previous record was held by a couple players, including teammate Bobby Jenks.

After the nostalgia was gone, the Twins went to work. Actually, I should say “the team that possesses the White Sox whenever they play in Minnesota” went to work. Bad defense killed the Sox again and lead to runs for Minnesota. Scott Podsednik had a terrible effort on a ball to LF which led to a run for Minnesota (a play that was clearly an error, but called a hit), and the next inning, Chris Getz darts to second base for no reason with a runner on first right before a ball shoots through the spot that Getz had just left. Quentin is likely to make Podsednik’s play. Maybe it would’ve helped the Sox if they were nostalgic and went with the same lineup used in Buehrle’s last game (Thome also sat, Quentin was in LF, and Fields at DH). Podsednik is an average defender and the constant shifting of positions seems to be exploiting him. Meanwhile, the Twins did their usual act of hitting balls that fall in at the perfect moment and showing good defense. 
The Sox offense did nothing against Scott Baker. The offense is starting to look lost when the top of the order doesn’t get on base. When that doesn’t happen, the team relies on home runs, which doesn’t work well in Minnesota.

July 25th Postgame/In-game Post: Sox lose in 10

I was too busy to do a pregame post today, but I’ve been following this afternoon’s game on the radio. I will be posting as the game goes along, so scroll down to read the latest updates.

Pierzynski got the Sox on the board with a solo shot in the 2nd, and the new guys have helped the Sox break through against Detroit in the 5th. Getz scored from first on a Beckham double (and misjudged play by Ryan Rayburn in LF) while Ozzie implemented the hit and run. 
As it stands now, the game is heading into the bottom of the 6th. The Sox threatened but couldn’t score in the top half of the inning.Gavin Floyd seems to have settled in after a tough first inning, but he already has 92 pitches. It’s likely we’ll see the bullpen later in the game, and the pitching will have to be strong to hold the Tigers.
UPDATE: Matt Thornton saves the day again in the bottom of the 7th and strands a runner on 3rd to preserve the 3-2 lead. A.J. has led off the top of the 8th with a hit and is now 4-4 on the day. The Sox are currently facing Detroit’s bullpen.
UPDATE: Dotel comes into the 8th to preserve the 3-2 lead. He takes care of Polanco and Thomas, but walks Miguel Cabrera (with a very tight strike zone behind the plate). Jenks is warming and Ozzie has now made the call for the 4 out save. It will be very interesting to see how Jenks recovers from his recent struggles
UPDATE: Jenks has blown another save in the 9th. The inning just ended and Sox are going into extras. It’ll be interesting to see who the Sox go to if they take the lead. Pena?
                                                                         

The Sox have lost and Bobby Jenks has blown another save. The offense could have performed better and again blew chances late in the game, but again, it means nothing to Jenks since he has the lead and his job is to close it out. His recent struggles have come against good teams, but today he faced the bottom of the order in the 9th. Today Ozzie opted for the 4 out save. This may have been a questionable move with Jenks’ recent struggles. He  is also the type of pitcher who likes to leave everything out there and has always seemed to have issues when having to pitch for more than one inning. I do think he has an issue leaving it all out there, coming to the dugout, and then going out there and having to do it again. Again, the fact that he’s been struggling only adds more issues to his mental approach in that situation.

July 24th Postgame – Sox Blow Golden Opportunities, Go 0-2 in the DH

The Sox follow ecstasy with disappointment today after losing both games of the double-header. They now sit 2 games behind Detroit in the standings.

Bartolo Colon did his job tonight. Colon delivered a quality start, but the offense couldn’t pay him back. The Sox had no situational hitting tonight while facing a pitcher they should have hit. This was a blast from the past that Sox fans did not want to see: hit a home run or two, take yourself out of innings (seen when Ozzie entrusted Wise with a hit and run early in the game) and sputter until the end of the game. Castro also hurt the Sox when he couldn’t bring in runners in scoring position with less than 2 outs late in the game. 
I have another gripe with Ozzie and his handling of the bullpen, AGAIN. Like I said last week, Scott Linebrink has proven that he can not be trusted. Why in the world would he be the first guy you go to in a tie game in the 8th inning? Let them beat your best! Let’s go back in time:
– July 17th – Sox vs. Orioles – Linebrink is brought into a 6-3 game. He gives up a hit to Roberts and a HR to Jones to make it 6-5. Linebrink gives up another hit, but gets out of it. The next day, July 18th, the Sox lead 4-1, Buehrle gives up a couple hits in the 8th, Adam Jones is up, and who does Ozzie bring in? Linebrink. Jones quickly singles, Linebrink is pulled, and Thornton comes in to save the day with the bases loaded. So Linebrink was brought in to face Adam Jones, who had homered off of him the night before?
– July 20th – Sox vs. Rays – Sox lead 4-3 in the 8th. Linebrink is called upon to relieve Gavin Floyd. Linebrink gets an out but gives up a hit and a walk, and again, Thornton is called upon to save Linebrink and Ozzie (and he is successful). 
-Tonight – Sox vs. Tigers – Linebrink is called on in the 8th to relieve the starter against the top of the order. He gets an out and then proceeds to load the bases. Again, Thornton is called upon to save the day, but is not perfect this time, and walks in the deciding run before getting out of the inning.
These are examples of Ozzie using Linebrink in big situations. Why? These are situations that used to go to Dotel, Thornton, or both. Dotel has his faults, but I trust him much more than Linebrink. I know that Dotel was used in Game 1 today, but honestly, I would have much rather wasted Linebrink in Game 1 once it was known that Contreras turned in a decent outing and you had no idea what you were going to get from Colon in a big game for the Sox. Linebrink has now suffered his 5th loss of the year. 3 of those losses have come against the Tigers…

Sox Lose Game 1 of Double-Header, Look To Colon In Game 2

Game 1 Postgame

Verlander takes care of the Sox with a complete game today. He was on the ropes a few times during the game but got himself out of it. The Sox did not have a very good approach this afternoon. There were way too many quick innings by the offense. Verlander is very good at home and the Sox should’ve been a little more patient later in the game to get to the bullpen (Rodney has been good but the rest of the bullpen has 17 blown saves). Verlander is a freak, however, and again showed he can get stronger late in the game (with the gun coming in over 100 m.p.h. in one of the last pitches of the game). On the other side, it was a positive outing for Contreras. He stayed long enough in the game to rest the bullpen in case it is needed tonight.

Game 2 Pregame

The Sox lineup for Game 2, per Mark Gonzales’ Twitter account ( http://twitter.com/MDGonzales/status/2825311919 ):
Podsednik – LF
Ramirez – SS
Dye – RF
Thome – DH
Konerko – 1B
Beckham – 3B
Wise – CF
Castro – C
Colon – SP
Castro catches Colon in game 2. Quentin gets a break as well. The lineup should be okay tonight with Detroit starting Eddie Bonine. This is Eddie’s first start of the season (and 6th in his career). Bonine pitched out of the bullpen in April and did not fare that well. The question mark is Bartolo Colon. I really have no idea what to expect from him and the Sox are hoping for a quality start to salvage the double-header.

Jenks blows brilliant outing for Richard – July 21st Postgame

There is no other way to put it. This loss rests entirely on the shoulders of Bobby Jenks. It’s one thing to get hit around. It’s another thing to hit batters and give up walks in critical spots. Unfortunately, the unbelievable outing by Clayton Richard gets lost in the shuffle.

More to come later in the night…I need a break after a game like that

Alright, Clayton Richard deserves some more attention. 8 IP, 4 hits, 2 walks, 7 K’s and 1 earned run. His fastball really had some action tonight. I’m not sure if the extra rest helped him. It could also be a matchup factor with the Rays, who Richard performed well against in last year’s playoffs (1.42 ERA in 6 and a third, out of the bullpen). His mentality may have also helped him. This was a big start for both Clayton and the team, and he probably gained some confidence after the Rays came out of the 3rd inning with just one run. Bottom line, Clayton came up huge for the Sox tonight. It’s a shame his start was wasted and the Sox threw away a possible win with such an unlikely performance.

Like I said, all the blame goes to Jenks. Could the Sox offense have done better? Sure, they squandered some opportunities, but Niemann is a great pitcher and in the end, it was a Sox lead in the 9th and Jenks did not do his job. As a fan, I can only hope that this type of game doesn’t have a carryover effect.


A blog post wouldn’t be complete without complaining about an annoying Ozzie Guillen tendency. Again, I hate a pinch hitter being used against a closer, and I hate Ozzie’s obsession with avoiding R/R and L/L matchups. This happened when Nix pinch hit for Getz, even though Getz, a lefty, has a better average against lefties, and Howell, a lefty, has a higher batting average against stat against lefties.

Also, an important note for tomorrow’s game. John Danks has been scratched because of a blister and the Sox have called up Carlos Torres to make his debut and start in his place. http://chicago.whitesox.mlb.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20090721&content_id=5980586&vkey=news_cws&fext=.jsp&c_id=cws


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July 19th Postgame – Orioles blowout Sox

Well, there’s a reason why I need a day job, and there’s a reason no team has ever won a championship “on paper”. Today, all the cards were aligned for the Sox to complete the sweep…and the Orioles kicked their butt. Everyone stunk today. I wonder if the Sox had the same mindset I did and took the game too lightly…This season the team has given up too many games that they should have won. This is something the Sox can not afford to do, especially with their 2nd half schedule. The Sox have an extremely difficult schedule coming up, and have two very hard stretches which will tell the story of the season. Who knows, if the Sox blow it early in this tough stretch, they may turn into sellers, but as it stands now, the Sox will need to hang tough during these games if they seriously want another division title. I will be posting more on the schedule in the coming days. Right now, both the players and fans need to forget this one and enjoy the rest of their Sunday.

July 12th postgame, White Sox get thumped, lose rubber game

Buehrle was the most disappointing aspect of today’s game. The offense did not look great early (making quick outs against a guy like Baker with a big deficit), but they did wake up later in the game. In the end, the deficit became too big and the Sox lose the series. At the start of this series I said that anyone in their lineup could beat the Sox, and sure enough, Carlos Gomez kills Sox pitching again, which is a shame since he’s gotten benched for his poor offense this season. 

Beckham had another miscue at 3rd today. I have to wonder if it’s time to end the experiment and move the kid to his natural position. Ramirez has not looked great at SS either, but he dazzled at 2B last year. The problem is that Getz would be the odd man out (who is having a great July and helps the Sox in the youth and speed department). The Sox really shot themselves in the foot by putting their money on Fields and having no else to go to at 3B. Unless Nix can play there, you might have to consider giving Fields another chance. He did look good very early in the season, with a good approach at the plate (and also providing youth and speed, similar to Getz), but that all disappeared fast. But let’s remember, he is a young player, and if he was given the job, he should have probably had more time to prove himself. 
Luckily, Beckham seems to be unfazed by the issues, coming up strong at the plate and on plays later in the game whenever he makes an error. However, it still makes me wonder if the Sox are mishandling another prospect. Beckham was a very good shortstop and has all the makings to be a star. The transition to the big leagues is very hard and we are making the kid learn a new position on top of that. Since expectations are so high for Beckham, I’d rather not mess with the kid at all.
We all know the Sox aren’t perfect in that regard. Examples:
– Bringing up prospects too early because of the 5th starter hole years ago. The likes of Munoz and co. were billed to be decent pitchers, but never recovered after being brought up to have big leaguers hammer their stuff (Fixing the 5th starter fiasco, by the way, is one of the big reasons I credit the Sox finally putting it all together in 2005. Even if you put an average pitcher in that spot, you still help the bullpen, don’t have an automatic loss, etc. I think Javier Vazquez would have been incredible in that role this year.)
– Never really giving Brian Anderson the reins to start in CF. Since Rowand left, Anderson has been forced to platoon with Rob Mackowiak, Darin Erstad, and now Dewayne Wise.
– And even more recently, how about Aaron Poreda? He is taken away from starting regularly in the minors, is used very sparingly, then is told he can’t start because he has to be stretched out. 
I have to wonder if Josh Fields will just be another name on the list…and I really hope the Sox don’t make similar mistakes with Beckham

July 10th Postgame – Sox come short against Twins 6-4

The Sox gave another one away tonight. John Danks’ 1st inning from hell ends up costing the Sox. His four straight walks to start the game all come in to score and end up being the difference.

The positives in this game:
-The fact that Danks came back strong and saved the bullpen. I have to credit Ozzie for not pulling him too early.
-The team having another honorable comeback effort against a pitcher who is very good in his home ballpark. Other than Danks in the 1st, the Sox kept composure in a tough atmosphere. 
-I also loved the game Chris Getz had tonight. He hit the ball to the right side during the right situations a couple times and it helped him drive in a couple runs. 
You have to wonder if the extra day of rest affected Danks tonight. He did seem to improve his control issues as the game went on, and you have to figure that that little bit of rust came into play and may have been the difference in the game tonight. I personally hate changing around the rotation for a specific series if it’s going to mess with a pitcher’s routine, and you can argue that it may have cost the Sox two straight games. 
A couple more questionable observations:
– I still hate the defensive alignment the Sox used tonight. The last place I want to test Podsednik in CF is in this dome, and Wise is no defensive star himself. Wise’s bat is not that valuable and I thought this was a very risky move.
– Should the Sox have pitched around Mauer in the 7th? It’s pick your poison with Mauer and Morneau, but 1st base was open, and with that amazing average you figure Mauer has the better chance of getting the basehit. Thornton also has great stats against Morneau (3 for 18, .167 average). 
-Is it really necessary to use Jenks in the 8th the way he was used tonight? I really don’t like a closer being used in that situation.

July 9th Postgame – Sox lose to Indians 10-8

This loss really frustrated me. Ozzie shot the Sox in the foot too many times with his decisions today . I’m not going to pretend to be a baseball genius, but everything played out exactly as I expected it too. Trust me, I took no pride in being right, it was actually frustrating as hell! But yes, for a while I’ve been mad about the same decisions that took place in the game today:

-The decision to start Clayton Richard: I don’t know what Clayton Richard has shown that tells the Sox he deserves more starts. Aaron Poreda was called up, give the kid a shot and use him! Why else is Poreda up? Too often the Sox misuse their prospects and make their jobs much harder than they should be. We take Poreda away from his regular starts and use him here and there. We bring up Beckham and say ‘here kid, and learn a new position while you’re at it’. We platoon guys when they should be starting (who remembers Anderson vs. Mackowiak?). Anyways, enough painful memories, and back to, well painful memories…Clayton Richard. There was the short period after the Peavy trade where Richard had some trade value, but you just knew he had no where to go but down, and the plummet continues. I mean, who didn’t see this coming?

– Following up Richard with Carrasco: Carrasco has decent stats this year, but I don’t know what tells Ozzie that Carrasco could be the stopper or that he should be used in some sort of long-man role. I could see a team using Carrasco when they concede a blowout or are running thin and really need to give other relievers some rest, but Ozzie seems to think much more highly of him. Of course, Carrasco then goes on to give up more runs. Needing that bullpen guy to stop the bleeding is very important when a team tries to come back and the Sox failed to do it twice today.

(Poreda is finally brought in, does his job, and is then pulled…)

– Octavio Dotel: I have a love-hate relationship with Octavio Dotel. I think Ozzie Guillen is just in love with him. He loves to use him, and seems to like to do it in any situation possible. The one situation I hate to see is when Guillen brings Dotel into the game in the 6th. Ozzie has loved to do this in 09 and I absolutely hate it. This means that the bullpen will now have to handle 4 innings of outs, meaning that it’s likely that either all of Dotel, Thornton, Linebrink, and Jenks will be used, or that one of those guys will go more than one inning. Now, using simple odds, how likely is it going to be that so many bullpen guys are all going to be ‘on’ on a given night? And how comfortable are you when any of those guys goes more than one inning? Would it kill to have a guy like Poreda go one more inning?

Anyways, Dotel comes in and promptly gives up a run, which again hurts the comeback momentum. It was only the top of the 6th, but the momentum effect was clear and I already felt like the Sox were done, which is a sad statement against the Indians’ bullpen.

So, the Sox go on to lose 10-8. My gripes  sound like second-guessing if you don’t know me, but if you do know me, you’ll know that I’ve been harping on these points for weeks (take my word for it 🙂 ). So tonight you’ve learned that I hate:
-using Dotel early or ‘handing it over to the bullpen’ in the 6th
-using Carrasco in a meaningful role
-continuing to count on Richard when you have a guy like Poreda
-and now a new one, using pinch hitters against closers (This was done today with Wise. Again, not the first time Ozzie has done this in 09. Guys don’t see a pitch all day and then they’re asked to hit off a closer? Not to mention it’s fricken Dewayne Wise…)

I don’t hate Ozzie Guillen. No manager will be perfect and no one would be able to please every fan, but I have to continue to question the way Ozzie handles the pitching staff and rotation. I really believe he blew it today and this was a win the Sox should’ve had against a bad team. The one positive is that the offense did try to come back and did score 8 runs. The bad news is that it was done against a bad pitcher and it didn’t continue against a bad bullpen.