At this point in this season for the White Sox, it's all about milestones.
Jose Abreu crossed one off his list on Wednesday by hitting his 30th homer, and he hit another tonight by collecting his 100th and 101st RBIs. Assuming Chris Sale collects four strikeouts on Friday, that sets up a relaxing final weekend full of reserve players.
Tonight's game wasn't so stress-free. John Danks struggled over five laborious innings, while Kris Medlen really took his time. As a result, this nine-inning game took eight minutes longer than the 10-inning game the night before. Maybe the Sox and Royals are bad at saying goodbye. Their last meeting of the season left the Sox 7-12 against Kansas City at the end of it.
Fast-forwarding to Abreu's feat, he received his chance in the seventh inning thanks to some two-out hitting. Luke Hochevar set down the first two, but Tyler Flowers singled through the right side, and Adam Eaton slashed a fan-interference double past third base to put two in scoring position for Abreu.
Abreu fell behind 0-2, but worked the count even before pounding a fastball through the left side for a two-run single. He joined Albert Pujols as the only players in baseball history with 30 homers and 100 RBIs in each of their first two seasons. It also narrowed the gap to 6-4, but the Sox couldn't drawn any closer (Alexei Ramirez ended the eighth by getting caught at home on a wild pitch that didn't get too far away from Drew Butera).
As for the rest of the game ... meh.
Danks just didn't have it against a team he normally handles. A Mike Moustakas double in the first inning put the Sox behind 1-0 before they even came to the plate, and they spent the whole night trailing.
Danks didn't get the breaks -- the Royals' three-run third started when Eric Hosmer's grounder hit the bag and bounced over Abreu's head for a triple -- and he couldn't make his own, either. Moustakas added to his collection with an RBI single, and Jonny Gomes added a two-run base hit to make it a 4-0 game.
The Sox answered that crooked number with one of their own in the bottom of the third. Eaton and Abreu teamed up to start the rally with a walk and a single, and two batters later, Trayce Thompson dropped an RBI single to right to put the Sox on the board.
Ramirez followed by nearly ending the inning with a routine bouncer to short. However, Alcides Escobar pulled a Tony Graffanino and let the ball trickle through his legs for an error that allowed Melky Cabrera to score from second and cut Kansas City's lead in half while Thompson moved to third. Then Ramirez ended the inning with one of the more unsuccessful stolen base attempts you'll see. It was not a great night on the basepaths for him.
*I think John Danks has a true talent level, guys:
- 2013: 4.75 ERA
- 2014: 4.74 ERA
- 2015: 4.71 ERA
*Carlos Sanchez was picked off by Medlen, so they ran into three outs total.
*The front of the White Sox bullpen pitched four scoreless innings, allowing just two hits and a walk.