The seven-game losing streak is put to an end! And there wasn’t even much suspense, as the Chicago White Sox tore through Tampa Bay Rays pitching phenom Brendan McKay in a 9-2 runaway on Friday night.
We can thank my lucky rabbit’s foot for that, as well as South Side Sox’s very own Ashley Sanders, who is down in Tampa Bay cheering on our White Sox.
But good luck tokens and White Sox swag aside, the White Sox just whomped up on the Rays tonight.
In the last seven games — the entire second half, so far — the Sox have combined for just 10 extra-base hits ... tonight, they had NINE.
McKay has been great for the Rays — but not tonight. On his first pitch, Leury García greeted him with a double to deep right. José Abreu reached first on an error by Rays second basemen Mike Brosseau, allowing García to run home to give Reynaldo López an early 1-0 lead, just like that.
Leury is wheely fast!
López was also greeted with an extra-base hit in the first, a triple from Austin Meadows. Ji-Man Choi was able to single him home to quickly tie the game up 1-1.
McKay found himself in some trouble in the second inning. Jon Jay singled and the speedy Adam Engel reached on an infield single to extend the inning with two outs. García would then double to right, scoring Jay and Engel to make it 3-1.
What do we say to the gods of BABIP?— Chicago White Sox (@whitesox) July 20, 2019
Not today. pic.twitter.com/WWY4frv8OS
Yoán Moncada stretched the two-out rally with a double as well, pushing the lead to 4-1.
ReyLo would give up his second and final earned run in the second. Joey Wendle, who saw López well tonight, doubled, and Brosseau doubled him home. But after that, it was smooth sailing for López through seven innings.
The fourth inning called for a Yolmer Sánchez home run. That home run was most definitely for Ashley Sanders, who was at the game sporting her Yolmer jersey.
García doubled again, and Moncada singled him home to make the game 6-2, which bounced McKay from the game.
The rookie southpaw lasted just 3 1⁄3 innings, giving up nine hits, six runs, five earned and striking out five.
Colin Poché entered in the fifth inning for the Rays and found himself some quick trouble. Sánchez doubled, and Engel tripled him home. Engel would also find his way home on a wild pitch from Poché to make the game 8-2.
The scoring settled down after the fifth inning. The Sox didn't strike again until the ninth. Welington Castillo singled off Ryne Stanek, followed by a Jay single and Sánchez double (again) to score Castillo for the final run of the night.
As I said earlier, ReyLo will have a great second half this season. His final line tonight? Seven innings, six hits, two earned runs, eight strikeouts, one walk. Things to note, the one walk was actually strike three, a blown call by home plate umpire CB Bucknor. ReyLo’s command has been so much better, his strikeout numbers are back up and he didn't give up a home run tonight, which he does often.
Finally — an end to the seven-game losing streak. The Sox have some momentum with Reynaldo’s quality start — and we have Lucas Giolito and Dylan Cease to follow the next two days.
Tomorrow at 5:10 CT we have Lucas Giolito vs. reigning Cy Young winner Blake Snell. Catch the game broadcast on WGN and listen on WGN-AM. Sox Math champ Joe Resis will take on the game coverage for SSS tomorrow.
I leave you with this image of ReyLo cruising through the second half of the season.