Watching the White Sox offense try to score runs is like waiting for a mail-in rebate come in. Sometimes the payoff comes sooner than expected. Most of the time, though, it takes phone calls, e-mails, and several extra weeks before the envelope arrives -- if it ever does.
The White Sox took a 1-0 lead on an Alex Rios solo shot in the second inning, and the enjoyable version of the offense called it a night. In came the version that makes scoring runs as miserable an experience as possible, and it came bearing gifts such as:
*The third inning! Brent Morel occupied third, and Gordon Beckham second, after an error, a walk and a Juan Pierre sac bunt. They wouldn't move, as Alexei Ramirez popped out in foul territory, and Paul Konerko hit a routine fly to right.
*The fourth inning! Dayan Viciedo blistered a double off Mike Moustakas' forearm, then moved up a base on Adam Dunn's jamshot single to left (his fourth hit off a lefty in 86 at-bats). Tyler Flowers struck out though, and after Brent Morel walked, Gordon Beckham put a good swing on one -- that resulted in a flyout to deep center. No runs.
*The seventh inning! Not only did the White Sox put runners on second and third with one out, but they both scored -- courtesy of the Wild Pitch Offense and a grounder to second.
It's hard to get excited about an offense that can only sustain rallies with assistance from the opponent. It's also hard to get excited about a two-run inning when the White Sox still trailed by a 6-3 margin afterward.
Yes, the White Sox went 1-for-7 with runners in scoring position -- and the one hit didn't end up scoring a run. Contrast that to the Royals, who went 7-for-19 as they continued to have fun playing baseball, and in the end, you have one team that's lost seven straight, and another team that has won seven in a row.
You can also point to the pitching, which allowed 18 hits and 10 runs. But we know Zach Stewart isn't particularly good, and had the Sox cashed in a couple of earlier opportunities, Ozzie Guillen might have had an excuse to use his good relievers, instead of Will Ohman and Josh Kinney.