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Beef powers the win; Sox outlast Royals, 5-4

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After the game got off to a bad start for Ervin Santana, Welington Castillo and Tim Anderson lead the comeback

Seattle Mariners v Chicago White Sox
Well done: Beef picked a good time for his first homer of the season.
Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

Tonight’s game got off to an ominous start for Ervin Santana and the Sox, and the storyline looked like it would again be tragic— at least early.

Santana opened up the game with a walk, but was bailed out with a double play. At the end of the first, after the Sox were sent down 1-2-3, Santana was hit hard in the second. Hunter Dozier started out the inning with a home run to left-center to take the 1-0 lead. A couple batters later, Chris Owings hit a home run to right-center:

Santana was better in the third, results-wise, as he only allowed a double, but his fastball continued to get hit hard. Command was an issue for the veteran righty in his first game, but his velocity was sitting 90-91 mph. Tonight, Santana was routinely 88-89 in the first three innings, but by the fourth inning, his heater was back at 91, and Santana looked better. He was locating the fastball more, and his slider looked passable because of it.

Meanwhile, White Sox hitters were making Heath Fillmyer look like Cy Fillmyer (TM steely3000). Fillmyer was sitting at 90-91 mph, and much more effectively than Santana. Fillmyer was able to get out in front of batters in the count and his fastball-changeup combination was fooling Sox hitters consistently. Thankfully, (though we did not know it yet), Jose Abreu was credited with a hit off of an infield single in the first inning. Unfortunately, only the only other hit in the early part of the game was from Yolmer Sanchez, as the White Sox deficit held at 3-0.

After we met a couple bananas and a hot dog (thanks, Chuck), the White Sox offense woke up in the fifth inning. It was a half-inning with long replay delays, and in the process the Sox added three runs to tie the game.

First, Anderson was able to get on base with a single. Next up, Alex Gordon stole a hit from Welington Castillo and nearly threw out Anderson at first, but replay confirmed Anderson was safe. After a Palka walk, Yolmer grounded into a double play — or so we thought. Yolmer was able to beat the throw to first, and Anderson, who motored home as the aftermath unfolded at first base, scored from second. That also led to a third replay to confirm Anderson’s score. The Sox basically hustled their way to the first run.

Here is Anderson on his day:

The White Sox were not done though, hitting their way to two more runs. Leury Garcia hit a double that scored Sanchez. After Garcia, Yoan Moncada singled on a changeup from Fillmyer to score Leury, and the game was tied 3-3. Santana at that point, bailed out into a no-decision. He was much better in the last couple innings, when his fastball pushed past 90 mph. He was also much better with his command in the last two innings.


Manny Banuelos entered the game in place of Santana and threw a scoreless sixth, and the Sox stranded two batters on the basepaths in their half-inning. Banuelos made a grave error in the seventh with a leadoff walk to Billy Hamilton, as Hamilton went on to steal second and advanced to third on a poor on the throw — on a pitchout, no less — from Welington Castillo. The Sox have now allowed 12-of-12 in stolen base attempts. With Hamilton at third, Whit Merrified drove him and the Royals took back the lead.

Thankfully, everything corrected itself, much to the happiness of Castillo. Bañuelos got through the eighth inning, despite some walk troubles, because the battery caught Hunter Dozier stealing (with Anderson on the tag), so make it 12-of-13, suckers!

Better, in the bottom of the eighth, after Anderson doubled for his third hit of the night, Castillo finally found some offense with a home run to right field, putting the Sox ahead, 5-4.

Alex Colome came into the ninth inning to complete his fourth save of the season, and 100th career save. What ho, the Sox have won three out their last four games!