Yeah, Sox fans certainly needed that.
The team got a masterful performance from starting pitcher Carlos Rodon, who looked strong all game. The lefty went 7 1⁄3 shutouts innings, giving up three hits and two walks. He also struck out seven.
Rodon had a full arsenal of plus-pitches on display tonight. The scouting report says that his slider is his best pitch, but his changeup looked sharp on a warm night at Guaranteed Rate Field. Steve Stone was impressed that he couldn’t tell a difference in Rodon’s arm angle and arm velocity between his fastball and changeup. Hitters just couldn’t tell the difference — it was fun to watch.
Rodon also looked comfortable using his fastball all night. He sat roughly 93-95 mph while topping out at 96 mph.
Luke Weaver was close to as good as Rodon tonight. He allowed a soft RBI force out to Tim Anderson in the fifth inning, but that was it. The right-hander went six innings, giving up just one earned run on three hits and two walks to go along with seven strikeouts.
Mike Mayers entered in the seventh and had some difficulties. After getting the first two outs of the inning, Mayers allowed a single to Omar Narvaez, whose average is now sitting at .280. Anderson followed with a line shot double down the left field line to score Narvaez to make it a 2-0 game.
On the next pitch, Charlie Tilson blooped a single over second baseman Kolten Wong’s head.
Rodon got into a bit of trouble in the seventh, leaving the bases loaded when he exited. It wasn’t all his fault, as Yoan Moncada committed an error that would have most likely turned into a double play. But Juan Minaya struck out Tommy Pham, and Joakim Soria struck out Jose Martinez to close out the inning without any baserunners crossing home plate.
The Sox offense had more in the tank in the eighth inning. Moncada turned around a Jordan Hicks’ 102 mph fastball for a triple. He would then score two batters later on a Jose Abreu high one-hopper to Hicks.
Soria finished off the game to save his 13th game of the season. Trade bait, you say?
The Sox improve (huh?) to 31-61, while the Cardinals drop to 47-44.