With the weather remaining hot in Detroit, the Chicago White Sox offense finally caught up to the thermometer, throttling the Tigers, 8-4, on Saturday.
It was the first win in five tries against the Tigers this season.
Catching fire again, Tim Anderson led off against Bengals southpaw Francisco Liriano and went 2-for-4, with three runs and four RBI. Anderson touched Liriano for a solo homer in the fifth inning and chased that in the sixth with a three-run shot off of Louis Coleman. Heading into the series, Anderson was mired in a 5-for-37 slump.
José Abreu rang up an even toastier day, going 4-for-4 with two doubles. Adding a walk, Abreu reached base five times, and his shot his average up to .319.
Daniel Palka brutalized two hits as well, a 116 mph, RBI single in the sixth and 110 mph home run in the seventh, the two hardest-hit balls of any day game on Saturday, according to the White Sox broadcast.
Hector Santiago had a typical bullpen day sort of start, giving up seven hits over five innings, but just one walk against five Ks. His game score of 38 wasn’t great, but well outpaced Liriano’s 27.
And considering the full-on Hector Santiago/Chris Volstad hydra, the White Sox “start” wasn’t bad at all. Volstad chipped in two scoreless, one-hit innings and has whittled his ERA down to 3.67.
Anderson had a more adventuresome day in the field, tallying three errors, including two on the same play with two outs in the ninth. TA bobbled a game-ending grounder, taking the ball off of his injured/wrapped right thumb; as Jeimer Candelario wildly rounded third base on the grounder and was caught dead to rights running home, Anderson gakked the throw home on a bounce and allowed Detroit’s final run to score.
Six Pack of Stats
Tim Anderson’s three-run homer off of Louis Coleman in the sixth inning added the most win probability of any single play in the game.
The win pushes the White Sox’s record up to 16-33, a .327 winning percentage. Though still the authors of the worst 49-game start in franchise history, the White Sox have crept ahead of the 1932 squad and, with a 53-win pace, is no longer on track to be the worst White Sox club of all time.
Anderson’s two-homer day contributed to the highest win probability added for the game, and claims today’s MVP. José Abreu’s four-hit effort garnered a .271.
The highest total leverage faced in the game went to Detroit’s Coleman, who oversaw the turn of the game to Chicago’s favor by surrendering homers to Anderson and Daniel Palka in the sixth.
Hector Santiago’s strikeout of John Hicks, stranding runners on first and second to end the fifth inning, kept the score tied 3-3 and set the stage for Palka’s eventual game-winning home run leading off the next inning. At 2.19, Santiago’s punchout was the highest-leverage play of the game.
In his hot streak since May 3, Abreu has added 141 points to his OPS, up to .942. Over the 21 games played since then, the White Sox’s offensive linchpin has hit .388/.441/.659.