Gavin Floyd had his curve tonight, getting seven whiffs, but it wasn’t enough. That darn Jose Altuve, he pounded a mistake for a ground-rule double to left to start the game, advancing to 3rd on a wild pitch. After a strikeout on a hanging curve to Jordan Schafer, Jed Lowrie sacrificed himself in the air to bring in the run. While he struck out J.D. Martinez to end the inning, it was an auspicious start for a pitcher on recent shaky ground. In the bottom half of the frame, Adam Dunn beat the shift with a line-drive single to right, against a lefty to boot, but was stranded by Paulie, as he grounded out softly to short. This would be a sort of theme for the evening.
In the second, Floyd showed that his home run troubles will continue, as he gave up a solo shot to Brett Wallace (holy portrait!). Gloveonchair saved a baserunner with a very rangy, diving snag in shallow right; let’s enjoy this good great defense for what it is.
The third inning featured Gavin flashing his curveball and striking out the side, eventually. This including a hilarious pitch at the feet of Brian Bogusevic that got away from AJ. Schafer then struck out but reached base on Gavin’s second wild pitch of the night. Alex Rios and Gordon Beckham teamed up to save Schafer from scoring with some good relays, as Lowrie doubled down the right field line. Martinez hit a fly to right that was jusssst foul, with physics and luck saving two runs. Floyd struck him out on the next pitch to end the threat.
Alejandro De Aza got it moving with two outs in the third, singling sharply to right. Beckham kept it going, taking a pretty good pitch into centerfield for another single. Dunn had a great PA to follow, walking after falling behind and fouling a few off. That loaded the bases for Konerko, but he, again, grounded out to short. The bobbled ball may have given a swift runner a chance, but alas, we like our Paulie, just not for his legs.
Despite the instances of wildness, Floyd waited until the fourth to walk his first batter, Wallace, who led off the inning. A strike out and and a couple flyouts immediately followed to end the inning.
In the fourth, again with two outs, Dayan Viciedo and Alexei Ramirez got the line up and moving again. Turns out trying to manufacture runs with two hands tied behind your back can be difficult. At least that takes away the bunt (not that we’ve been murdered as fans lately), but it also didn’t result in runs, as Chris Johnson made a great bare-handed grab-and-throw of a "high chopper, hiiiigh chooopppper" off the bat of Hudson to end the inning.
After a close walk to Schafer with two outs in the fifth, Lowrie, of course Lowrie, homered off of Gavin to make it 4-0.
De Aza doubled to lead off the bottom of the inning, and advanced to third on a "just missed it, just missed it" flyball to left, a heads-up play by our lead-off hitter. De Aza scored on a screamer to right by Dunn, with some Bacon-esque play by Altuve preventing the single. Paulie again grounded to short to end the inning.
Rios doubled to left-center to lead of the 6th, and AJ picked him up with a double of his own down the first base line. Time to make hay, no? That’s why the White Sox called up Jordan Danks, pinch-hitting for Tank in his first major league PA. Danks advanced the runner by grounding out to first, "getting the job done." Alexei came up and worked the count before hitting a "that’ll get the job done!" blooper to short, getting the run home and beating the throw, putting the Pale Hose within one and driving Wandy Rodriguez from the game. With Wilton Lopez now on in relief, Orlando Hudson and De Aza fly out to left, leaving Ramirez at first, "job" far from "done."
In the seventh, the Astros threatened to be a threat. However, instead of an inning-ending double play, Alexei let a grounder go off his glove roll into center field, putting runners on the corners. Ramirez really bit himself in the ass twice in a row, by losing all good sense in a rundown situation. Matt Thornton caught Altuve far from first, and Alexei, getting the ball, concentrated on Altuve instead of the runner from third, throwing Hawk into "No! Dadgummit!" convulsions. A little league play, indeed, Hawk. 5-3 Astros at that point.
In the seventh, Sox again made noise with two outs, as Rios doublesd putting Dunn on 3rd and chasing Lopez and bringing in the lefty Wesley Wright to face Pierzynski. AJ promptly fell behind and weakly grounded to short. Yet another threat ended with little fanfare.
Some things happened in the 8th and ninth, including Will Ohman barely containing a glove slam on the mound after giving up a monster three-run homer to Bogusevic, which put the game out of reach. After the gift run from Alexei, this game just didn’t have The Feel that we’ve been addicted to lately, with so many opportunities coming after two outs. In the bottom of the ninth, Paulie failed to hit a six-run walk-off home run. Sox lose, 8-3.
- Floyd has given up ten homers in his last five starts. That’s total, not each, despite how it feels.
- Konerko didn’t look very good, going 0-5 with a strikeout and some weakly hit grounders.
- De Aza, Rios and Dunn, however, did look good; Rios had two doubles, De Aza singled and doubled, and Dunn smacked two singles and drew a walk.
- Danks had a sorta-bloop single to left, his first major league hit. His big brother plans to use the ball to throw against the wall in the offseason.
- Viciedo left the game with tightness in both hamstrings.
Record: 32-26 | Box