Tonight, the 2014 White Sox were allowed to see what opponents experienced playing the White Sox last year. The Tigers pretty much completed the 2013 White Sox checklist:
No. 1: Letting a starter off the hook early
Jose Quintana did not have his good location today, and the Tigers let him know, but gently. They collected eight hits and a walk over the first four innings, and yet they could only score two runs, both in the second. They stranded two runners in the first, two in the second, one in the third, and they would've stranded two in the fourth, had Andrew Romine not been picked off (bad baserunning another hallmark of last year's Sox).
Funny thing is, Quintana only deserved one of those two runs, because Dayan Viciedo played a bloop double into a triple by failing to read the spin. He had to chase it around the corner, so J.D. Martinez ended up with a stand-up triple, and he scored on a sac fly to give the Tigers a 2-0 lead.
No. 2: Playing poor defense
Anibal Sanchez didn't care for what went on behind him in the fourth inning. With Jose Abreu on first and one out, Dayan Viciedo hit a grounder to short that Eugenio Suarez gloved by hitting the ground. He had a chance for two with a quick throw, but getting the out at second would've helped Sanchez immensely, too. Instead, he fired the ball wide of second and allowed both runners to reach safely.
Conor Gillaspie followed with a single that Abreu didn't read correctly, but the throw didn't go home. Viciedo did read it correctly and ended up on third, and he came home on a sac fly two batters later without a throw from Rajai Davis for some reason, which tied the game.
But the Tigers took it up a notch in the seventh. Miguel Cabrera (playing third for the eighth time this year) couldn't handle a high hop, spoiling what could've been a double-play ball to clear the bases with two outs. After Alejandro De Aza popped out, Tyler Flowers shot a single through the left side. Joe McEwing planned to hold Gillaspie at third, but Davis didn't look the ball into his glove in left, and Gillaspie came around to score.
Brad Ausmus took the ball from Sanchez and gave it to the newly acquired Joakim Soria ...
No. 3: Boos
... and Soria was a disaster. He gave up a single to Adam Eaton to load the basis, and Alexei Ramirez unloaded them with a double to the right-center gap. Jose Abreu cleared the bases again with a moon-shot homer to left, his 31st of the year. Adam Dunn didn't want anything to do with baserunners either, going back-to-back with a swat to right.
Soria finally recorded an out by getting Viciedo to bounce to second, followed by a Bronx cheer, but after singles by Gillaspie and Beckham, Ausmus needed to use his third pitcher of the inning. Soria allowed two inherited runners and four of his own to score over just one-third of an inning, and although Ian Krol retired De Aza to end the seventh to more sarcastic applause (De Aza made two outs -- ouch), the Sox led 9-2.
And adding insult to injury, Abreu hit a two-run double into the right field corner in the eighth. He went 3-for-4 with a walk and four RBIs, which gives him the league lead in that category with 83.
The outburst allowed Jose Quintana to climb back into the win column after four straight no-decisions in July. He battled to finish six innings, allowing just the two runs on nine hits and two walks. He only struck out two, and it was Ian Kinsler both times.
Tremendous defense helped, at least after Viciedo ran a lap in the right field corner. The Sox turned three double plays -- a pair of 6-4-3's, and a 5-4-3 that started with a diving stab by Gillaspie in the sixth. Throw in Quintana's pickoff (Abreu ran down Romine without a throw) and a diving catch by Moises Sierra in the ninth, and the Sox looked like the first-place team between the two tonight, even if the standings tell a different story.
*Gillaspie almost had his first career steal after getting a sizable jump off Anibal Sanchez, but after he was initially ruled safe, a review showed the tag got him on the back before his foot touched the base.
*Quintana is back over .500 in his career (21-20-36).
*Abreu's hiting streak reached 18 games, and his averaged reached .299.
*De Aza was the only White Sox starter to go hitless (0-for-5).
*Soria's line after his first two outings with Detroit: 0.2 IP, 8 H, 5 R, 4 ER, 1 BB, 1 K.
Record: 52-54 | Box score | Play-by-play | Highlights