Well, not a particularly good way to start, but, that was the low point for the White Sox as Reynaldo López dealt the rest of his outing, pushing Chicago to a 5-2 win over Cleveland.
López only allowed one more hit, and it was a measly single. Really, the most trouble López had was in the third inning. He walked two batters, his only two walks of the game, and one came around to score. However, that was largely because of a throwing error by Welington Castillo. In total, Lopez had 15 swing-and-misses. If you are wondering how? Well, exhibit A:
Reynaldo López, 84mph Changeup and 98mph Fastball, Overlay. pic.twitter.com/LGwpmDb0NO— Rob Friedman (@PitchingNinja) May 14, 2019
Lopez’s velocity was at a season high, as it averaged 96.2 mph, maxed out at 98.5, and was called a strike 66% of the time. It was an electric pitch this evening, but the slider was probably the best of all, as it had a 24.1% swing-and-miss rate (seven total).
Meanwhile, the Sox quickly tied the game 1-1 after the Francisco Lindor home run to start the game. Jose Abreu crushed a home run of his own, to straightaway center field.
And the next inning, another one:
and another one the inning after that:
The first inning homer from Abreu was his 10th of the season, and his second homer off Shane Bieber in a week.
Castillo hit his third home run of the year, as he looks to improve on his woeful start. He has shown decent plate discipline this year, but he just hasn’t been able to get any hits (.164 batting average). Well, after his two-hit night (Castillo added a double later in the game), the average took a 12-point jump as he nears closer to the Mendoza line.
Moncada added his eighth homer — well what was his eighth homer until his ninth came in the sixth inning, and this time, to the opposite field:
Coming into the game, Moncada had struggled mightily in the last five contests, with a 46 wRC+ and a K-rate at 40%. He basically was May 2018 Yoan Moncada at the plate, but he was able to read Bieber well and crushed two homers. The first one, which had an exit velocity at 111 mph, was the sixth batted ball Moncada has hit more than 110 mph this season. Here is a Baseball Savant statcast update on his breakout season:
Yeah, he should be all right, and if you’re curious, Moncada had a 706 wRC+ in today’s 3-for-4, two-homer game.
The White Sox would add one more insurance run, this time off the bat of Yolmer Sanchez.
But the bullpen only needed a one-run lead. After Lopez left after 7 2⁄3 innings, Aaron Bummer came in to face two batters. He walked the first but got Jason Kipnis to line out to Abreu. Bummer still has not allowed a run since his promotion from AAA this season.
Alex Colome came in for the save and got a 1-2-3 inning. He was not overwhelming, as he did not induce a single swing-and-miss, but his batted balls were right at fielders. Colome lowered his ERA to 2.12 as he closed out his eighth game and the 19th win for the White Sox, a mark the 2018 Sox did not reach until June 5.
Tomorrow afternoon features the return of Danks for Nothin to White Sox game recaps, so be there to welcome him back, and to get out the brooms for a mini-sweep!