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Tigers 9, White Sox 5; Detroit’s sluggers prove too much for López and bullpen

Some good offense, lackluster pitching all around and some poor defensive plays lead to a blowout series opener

That Hurts: We can all share in Nicky’s agony after Monday’s blowout loss, particularly on a night where the offense was clicking.
Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images

It was good until, well, it wasn’t.

Tonight’s game started out looking like things were headed in the right direction. Reynaldo López was on the mound coming off of two good outings, facing a very beatable starting pitcher (who proved to be very beatable indeed), and the bats got going early, but in the end, it was the Detroit Tigers offense that tipped the scales for good, as they stormed past the Chicago White Sox, 9-5.

However, the night was not without its fair share of positive takeaways for Chicago. After both pitchers kept the game scoreless heading into the third, the Sox seized some opportunities against Artie Lewicki their second time through the lineup.

Adam Engel started things off with a leadoff double, followed by Nicky Delmonico being hit in the hand by a pitch. It was enough to give Tom Paciorek and Jason Benetti a scare, but luckily Nicky was able to keep on keeping on. Yolmer Sánchez would then lay down a beautiful bunt for a single to load the bases for José Abreu. Abreu would be the first of three consecutive RBIs, starting the scoring with a sacrifice fly. Daniel Palka followed with an RBI single, and Avisaíl García drove in the third run of the frame with another sac fly.

The Tigers would get one run back in the bottom of the third off a Jeimer Candelario sacrifice fly that nearly wasn’t, as Engel made a great throw from center that almost got James McCann at home. Then Detroit would get another run in the fourth, off of doubles from Nicholas Castellanos and Victor Martínez, giving the White Sox a 3-2 lead heading into the fifth.

Lewicki only made it 4 23 innings today, pulled in the fifth after allowing a two-out single to Palka. Lewicki would end up with a no-decision after allowing three earned runs, six hits, and three walks against three Ks. Drew VerHagen would come on with two on and two out, retiring Avi on a first-pitch fly out to end the inning.

With a 3-2 lead in the fifth, López had McCann down 0-2 before offering up a mistake to that resulted in a leadoff single, followed by a four-pitch walk to Victor Reyes. Candelario would then single to load the bases for José Iglesias. Iglesias would go on to hit into a double play, scoring one run in the process. Next up was resident White Sox killer of the night and the season, Castellanos, who would produce a clutch, two-out double to give the Tigers their first lead of the evening, at 4-3.

López would get out of the inning without surrendering any additional runs, but this would be the last we would see of him on the field. He would finish the day pitching five innings, while allowing four runs on seven hits, striking out two and walking one while earning a no-decision.

That no-decision came courtesy of Omar Narváez, who opened up the sixth with a leadoff homer to tie the game at 4-4. Enjoy this moment of happiness, before the bullpen took over.

Jeanmar Gómez came on to start the sixth by walking Candelario, before getting Iglesias to pop out. Then came our good friend Castellanos, who promptly launched a two-run homer to give the Tigers the rest of what they would need to put the game away.

Engel continued a terrific game today in the eighth, crushing a homer to left to creep the Sox to within 6-5. Unfortunately, that deficit would only grow in the bottom of the inning, as Detroit scored three more times (yeah, Castellanos knocked in two of ’em) to put the game away.

Hopefully Ricky’s boys can get back on track and even up the series tomorrow. Due up is Lucas Giolito and Blaine Hardy, for another 6:10pm CST start time.