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Absolut(ly) Needed

Tuesday night's match-up featured the teams that occupy the top two spots in the AL Central, and two of the best records in baseball. That match-up lost a little bit of it's luster in the last week, however, as both the Tigers and White Sox struggled to find the win column. They both came into Tuesdays game having lost their last two series, generally playing poor baseball in the process.

Tuesday night was more of the same for both teams. Freddy Garcia started the game for the Sox by working himself into a bases loaded jam in the first. He escaped that inning thanks to some decidedly unclutch hitting by the Tiger, but gave them the lead an inning later with a couple of Absolut hangers. The Tigers tried their best to let the Sox back in the game, but the Sox continued to give away outs to keep the game seemingly just out of reach.

  • In the first inning, Jim Thome left a runner at 3rd base with less than 2 outs. Paul Konerko could not pick him up with the next at-bat.
  • In the second inning, Alex Cintron botched a bunt with two on and nobody out. That's a tough situation to be bunting too, with 24 outs remaining, Brian Anderson on deck, and a 1-run deficit.
  • In the third inning, Jermaine Dye GIDP'd
  • In the fourth inning, A.J. Pierzynksi ran himself into an out.
  • In the seventh inning, Thome again left a runner on third with less than two outs. Konerko again failed to pick him up.
It seemed to have all the makings of another White Sox loss. But the Tigers gave the Sox just enough opportunities to get back into the game. A coupe of walks by Fernando Rodney set up Alex Cintron to make up for his botched bunt and poor approach in the ninth last week. Cintron did just that, making his first homerun in a White Sox uniform a memorable one.

I wouldn't go so far as to say his HR was as important as Crede's September 20th shot was last year, but it will certainly end up being one of the top 5 White Sox homeruns in '06. More than anything, it was great to salvage a win, especially against the top team in the division, after another night of lackadaisical play.