The Out of the Park sim we started at South Side Sox is running over with Brett and his team at South Side Hit Pen — Sports Illustrated.
It’s been a rough stretch for the White Sox. Over the past 10 days, the club has fallen out of first place in two of the three sims, and continues to languish well worse than .500 in the other. One sim made a bold trade ... will it help White Sox fortunes?
Baseball-Reference OOTP sim
May 1 Final White Sox 4, Orioles 0
Winning Pitcher Dallas Keuchel (4-1)
Losing Pitcher John Means (0-2)
HRs José Abreu (8), Nomar Mazara (10)
May 2 Final White Sox 9, Orioles 4
Winning Pitcher Dylan Cease (2-2)
Losing Pitcher Keyvius Sampson (2-2)
HRs Rio Ruiz (3), José Abreu (9), Edwin Encarnación (7), Nomar Mazara (11), Danny Mendick (2), Yoán Moncada 2 (11,12)
Standings 20-13, second place, one game behind Cleveland, sixth-best record in baseball
Notable Lucas Giolito, with 2.1 WAR, leads the majors
Keuchel was golden in the series opener, with a shutout and 93 game score (one hit, one walk, nine Ks). Kid Keuchy had the no-no going for 6 ⅔ innings before Renato Nuñez singled. Still, the lefthander needed just 91 pitches to complete the game — a masterpiece.
It was an offensive onslaught in Saturday’s game, as the White Sox pounded out six homers, scoring seven times in the first inning and leading 9-1 by the end of three. Sampson earned a 3 game score by giving up seven earned on six hits and four homers while recording just two outs. Mazara has now homered in three straight games.
South Side Hit Pen OOTP sim
May 1 Final Orioles 4, White Sox 0
Winning Pitcher Aaron Sánchez (3-1)
Losing Pitcher Michael Kopech (0-1)
Save Tanner Scott (9)
HRs Trey Mancini (4), Renato Nuñez (12)
Transaction: Reinstated RHRP Kelvin Herrera from irrevocable waivers after he refused an assignment to Charlotte; demoted LHSP Matt Tomshaw to the Knights.
May 2 Final White Sox 3, Orioles 2
Winning Pitcher Reynaldo López (3-0)
Losing Pitcher Mychal Givens (0-1)
Save Aaron Bummer (2)
Transaction: Traded Charlotte C Seby Zavala and $5 million to the San Francisco Giants for LHRP Tony Watson and RF Yasiel Puig.
Standings 16-17, third place, five games behind Minnesota, 16th-best in the majors
The offense has gone very dormant in May, and this six-hit effort continued the trend. Mancini victimized Kopech for a triple in the first and an inside-the-park home run (again, straight, no misplay, so just like HBPs, straight inside-the-park home runs must be an OOTP thing). Kopech, in his first start of the season, went four innings and gave up two runs while striking out five. His season ERA stands at 3.38, so all good thus far.
Finally, a bounce-back game for the White Sox. López took a no-hitter into the sixth and finished with 10 strikeouts, three hits and two walks. Meanwhile, two newcomers accounted for four of the five White Sox hits: Yasiel Puig went 2-for-4 with a double and a run scored in his South Side debut, also making a couple of great catches in right, and Edwin Encarnación picked right back up at the AL Player of the Week pace he claimed before breaking a rib on a slide last month by going 2-for-4 with a run scored.
May 1 Final White Sox 3, Orioles 2 (10 innings)
Winning Pitcher Steve Cishek (2-1)
Losing Pitcher Shawn Armstrong (0-1)
HRs Chris Davis (3), Ryan Mountcastle (2), Tim Anderson (5)
May 2 Final Orioles 8, White Sox 2
Winning Pitcher Wade LeBlanc (3-1)
Losing Pitcher Dylan Cease (2-4)
HR Dwight Smith Jr. (6)
Standings 13-20, fourth place, eight games behind Minnesota, tied for fifth-worst record in baseball
The first game was a thriller, with Yoán Moncada leading off the 10th with a walk and a first-pitch steal of second. Fellow rookie Nick Madrigal slapped an RBI single that sent all 13,049 fans home happy. Though he got the no-decision, Reynaldo López had a really strong start for the Sox.
On Saturday, things were not so sweet. It was not a good start for Cease, who lasted just 5 2⁄3 innings and gave up five runs (four earned), swelling his ERA to 7.64. Baltimore put the game away with three runs on five hits in the first inning. Cease managed 10 strikeouts in his stint, so it was an all-or-nothing outing.