Today’s game certainly started off the way the Chicago White Sox wanted.
The first three batters reached in the first inning for the Sox, highlighted by a Jose Abreu rocket off the Green Monster. The ball would have been out at The Rate, but Abreu took the RBI (it really should have been two — Jose Rondon didn’t read it very well).
Kevan Smith added an RBI groundout to put the Sox ahead 2-0 early.
Then the bottom of the first inning happened, and, well, it wasn’t so hot.
Carlos Rodon, making his first start since last September, walked Andrew Benintendi to begin the inning. Xander Bogaerts then hit a grounder to Tim Anderson’s backhand that he should have handled, but the ball skipped into center field.
If that wasn’t bad enough, Yoan Moncada committed a throwing error after a force out in the next at-bat to help the Red Sox cut the lead in half. Rodon did a great job limiting the Carmines to just that one run in the first.
Overall, Rodon was impressive today.
The lefthander went five innings, giving up two earned runs on six hits and two walks. He added seven strikeouts, at times showing off his ace potential. His fastball sat 92-95 mph through the game, and touched 97 a few times.
His two earned runs came on home runs to Jackie Bradley and J.D Martinez.
The Sox bullpen turned in yet another strong performance today. Recently promoted Xavier Cedeno went one clean inning with three strikeouts. Chris Volstad and Luis Avilan covered the next two innings with no runs.
Not a bad performance from the Sox today. Yoan Moncada continues to struggle, though. His average is down to .233 after another 0-for-4 today, and from the right side, things are even worse: .155, with 25 strikeouts.
The advantage a struggling team like this is that it can afford to see whether Moncada should continue hitting from the right side. I don’t know, try hitting him left-handed against lefties and see how he does. What’s the worst that can happen, he hits worse than .155? The White Sox are 12 1⁄2 games out of first place.
Anyway, the Sox fall to 21-41, while the Red Sox improve to 44-21. Reynaldo Lopez hits the bump tomorrow, hoping to avoid another heartbreak.