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Mariners beat White Sox 8-2; first inning dooms Lopez

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Lopez’s early control issues comes back to hurt him...

MLB: Chicago White Sox at Seattle Mariners
Lo No: Giving up five runs in the first inning isn’t the best way to start your second half.
Jennifer Buchanan-USA TODAY Sports

Unfortunately, Reynaldo Lopez began his second half with a regression to his peripherals.

Lopez entered today with a 3.91 ERA, but a 4.63 FIP and 5.46 xFIP. With those numbers, Lopez’s ERA was bound to increase. And that it did on Sunday afternoon.

After getting the first batter of the game to line out, Lopez allowed the next four to reach — two coming via the base-on-balls. The big blow of the inning came on a Ryon Healy three-run home run that was obliterated over the left field wall.

Just like that, the Sox were down 5-0 heading to the top of the second inning.

Jason Benetti and Steve Stone discussed how the Mariners ranked toward the bottom of the league in walks and instead earn their way on the base paths with hits. So when Lopez — or, really any pitcher — issues walks to this lineup, they’re asking for trouble because the free passes usually score.

The White Sox offense was no-hit through 5 13 innings until lo and behold Adam Engel broke it up on a soft infield single up the middle. Tim Anderson followed Engel’s hit with a towering home run (only 99 mph off the bat, but certainly enough) to left field.

The homer was the only scoring the Sox would get for the day. Jose Abreu did fist bump after lining a single to center in the seventh inning. Abreu still hasn’t managed a way to get out of his extended slump since early June, so he’ll take anything he can get at this point.

Seattle was not forced to use Edwin Diaz to seal up the victory because of another Healy three-run bomb in the eighth inning. Yeah, not the greatest game in White Sox history today.

The Sox drop to 34-64, and now stand only four games ahead of the lowly Kansas City Royals who swept the Minnesota Twins. Keep being you, AL Central.

The Mariners improve to an impressive 60-40 and have a 3.5 game lead in the Wild Card over the Oakland A’s.

The Sox will head south to take on the Los Angeles Angels tomorrow night.