White Sox Drop the Chris Sale Revenge Game 6-1
After two consecutive walk off wins, the White Sox looked to be full steam ahead with Chris Sale taking the mound for the Red Sox last night. Well, full steam ahead besides the Rodon injury news from the day before, but we’ll put that in a box and pretend it doesn’t exist. But I digress.
While the defending world champion Red Sox have been struggling this season, this still looked to be a good barometer series for the White Sox as a team looking to show some signs of progress this year. And that Nicky Delmonico walkoff the night before certainly drove up optimism walking into a Friday night rematch with our former ace.
Beyond the Red Sox struggles as a team, Chris Sale had been slogging through one of the worst stretches of his career, carrying an 0-5 record with an ERA that was closer to double digits than 3 into the game. Reynaldo Lopez was coming off the best game of his career, striking out 14 last Sunday against Detroit in a record-matching performance by the Sox pitching staff.
If there was a time to get some semblance of revenge, this was it, right?
Yeah, about that. Should’ve seen this coming from a mile away that Sale looks like his old self just in time for the revenge game at 35th and Shields. He absolutely mowed through the White Sox lineup, striking out 10 in 6 innings to go along with a 3 hit shutout. The numbers don’t really do this one justice. Some visuals should help convey the absolute filth Sale was dealing in this game, keeping our lineup at bay with that disgusting, trademark slider.
TA7 got absolutely buckled:
And then I guess the Moncada streak of not striking out looking is over now.
Not great looks for the AL Player of the Month and the guy we got for Sale, but when he’s throwing like that there really isn’t anything you can do. Sucks it’s happening against us instead of for us, but that’s in the past.
As much as it sucks watching Chris Sale winning a ring and dominating when he’s on, I’m past this trade. We didn’t win when we have him, and having him minus Moncada/Kopech/Basabe doesn’t make us a contender. So there’s no point in being upset about it as a White Sox fan. Even if we got his best season bWAR wise last year (6.8 bWAR), we’re what a 70 win team? It’s over. They tried building around him, it didn’t work.
Not to mention, he didn’t really want to be here at the end. Be it the Drake LaRoche-Ken Williams saga or Scissorgate, the White Sox relationship with Chris Sale wasn’t going to last. I think it’s safe to say he wasn’t entering Cooperstown wearing the Old English script Sox on his head. So I gladly took the prospect return and wished him the best in Boston.
There really isn’t much else to say about last night. Sale and the BoSox bullpen shut down our offense, plain and simple. Our bats never got going at all, with only 4 hats getting mustered up. I guess at least we avoided the shut out? These games happen, moving on.
On the mound, Lopez didn’t have his best stuff to make the Chris Sale matchup the pitcher’s duel we may have
naively anticipated. That was apparent when Rafael Devers took him to Pluto in the first. Seeing this in person was something.
Regression was expected from last Sunday, but this inconsistency from Lopez is frustrating. He’s got electric stuff and is my favorite pitcher on this staff. Beyond ReyLo, the bullpen actually looked solid. Osich, Ruiz, and Colome held it down, not giving up any ER in their three innings of work. Oh, and it looks like Jose Rondon is our new Matt Davidson.
I could get on my soapbox about the implications of Ricky Renteria waving a white flag down five and throwing a position player out there because “they weren’t within a grand slam” while still perpetuating the RICKYS BOYS DON’T QUIT mantra, but I won’t. At least Rondon’s scoreless inning was fun.
I could also get into why the hell Ricky is shuffling Moncada around the order (leadoff, second, fifth, etc.) instead of settling him into the two spot he was so productive in, but it’s expected now. Make the whole lefty/righty argument all you want. I have Billy Beane and the numbers people on my side in this one.
Ricky is going to be Ricky, and that means lineup construction is going to be frustrating. At this point that isn’t going to change while he’s here, so all we can do is buckle up on the march to relevancy.