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Why bother? Royals 3, White Sox 1

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Sister Mary Jo Sobieck stole the show with her first-pitch sinker, but Dylan Covey held his own

MLB: Kansas City Royals at Chicago White Sox
Tangled Up in Blue: Dylan Covey hurled well on Saturday, falling just short of six scoreless, but ultimately taking the loss.
Mike DiNovo-USA TODAY Sports

Not that I need to tell you, but Saturday’s 3-1 Chicago loss to the Kansas City Royals had many of the hallmarks of White Sox horribleness.

Let’s just briefly run them down, because I’m about ready to just start rooting for a 117-loss season, which is still theoretically possible on the the South Side. Whether even that would earn the White Sox the No. 1 pick in next year’s draft, plummeting them past the Royals and Baltimore Orioles in the 2018 Tankapalooza, is another thing entirely.

Atrocious Clutch Hitting

Succinctly: 0-for-9 with RISP.

The fourth frame was the most exasperating, as José Abreu and Daniel Palka led off with singles, but with runners on first and third and none out, Avisaíl García and Nicky Delmonico whiffed, and Tim Anderson flew out. In the seventh and eighth, leadoff men Kevan Smith and Abreu got on base, respectively, but neither could move around to score. And in the sixth, Abreu was the villain, although his ground out after two-out hits from Yoán Moncada and Yolmer Sánchez put runners on second and third was hardly the most egregious offense on offense tonight.

Whiffmania

Seven of the last nine White Sox batters struck out, 13 total in the game (Abreu had doubled to lead off the eighth, but the next three batters struck out). García had three strikeouts, while Moncada, Palka and Delmonico had two.

Moncada gets a backwards K on a crap pitch

BUNTING

When Smith singled to start off the seventh, Ricky Renteria called for Adam Engel, who had already singled twice himself, to hit away.

Yeah, right, you kidding? Of course he didn’t have Engel swing away — Ricky called for the sac bunt. Ricky called for the sac bunt after Engel fouled off his first attempt. Ricky called for the sac bunt after Engel fouled off his second attempt. Ricky called for the sac bunt when Engel was down 0-2. Ricky called for the sac bunt when Engel was down 1-2.

Engel fouled off all three balls in the strike zone, for a strikeout.

Players unable to do the absolute minimum expected at the plate

Engel didn’t just foul off three bunt attempts for the K. He fouled off a choice-cut changeup for the first foul, and two sinkers — the one breaking pitch you don’t mind having to bunt on — for the second two fouls.

Honorable mention to García and Delmonico, ostensible power hitters who were unable to launch so much as a fly ball to score Abreu from third in the fourth.

Highlight of the game taking place off the field

Not sure it’s a good or bad thing, but in a season where we’re witnessing Hawk’s final hurrah, and the requisite and promo nights and Dog Days and Flying Elvises and so on, tonight became yet another one of those games, and no, not because it was Tim Anderson bobblehead night.

And — of course — some continuation of the ‘boxes checked’ meme

Sure, FKL. But:


Did some good stuff happen? Sure, the White Sox had 35 at-bats in the game, and on one of them, Delmonico hit his second home run in as many nights.

Dylan Covey started the game for Chicago, and he was definitely not horrible, with a 54 game score and just about escaping through six scoreless. Final line: 5 23 innings, two earned, four hits, three walks, six Ks, one homer.

If the White Sox could get starts like that every game, they wouldn’t still be faced with the possibility of losing 117 games this season.