The Game in a Nutshell
It was all about the fifth inning tonight, as the White Sox entered trailing 2-0 and came out with a win in hand. Adam Engel led off by slapping a Kyle Hendricks floater deep into a desolate Wrigleyville, with no one around to “throw it back.” Tim Anderson and José Abreu then singled around an Eloy Jiménez fly out, Abreu’s duck snort simply muscled to right, ending Hendricks’ night. But with reliever Jharel Cotton in, things simply got worse for the Cubs. Three straight doubles (Yasmani Grandal, Edwin Encarnación, Luis Robert) and a triple (Leury García) made it a 6-2 game and officially a laffer.
Robert simply won’t stop. He muscled a single on his second at-bat of the game, but his double in the third was delightful. Cotton got a high, first-pitch strike, and Robert’s slight scowl meant there was trouble brewing. On 0-2, it was easy power for Robert, who dented the ivy in straightaway center and put the finishing touch on a 2-for-3, one-RBI, one-K, one-CS night.
Let’s be clear, the Cubs pretty well sucked tonight, which is a cue for northsiders and even some Sox fans alike to start stammering but-but-but practice baseball! Fine. The guy who might close for the ivy bumblers once Craig Kimbrel is finally sent home with a lock box of the $25 million he’s still owed, Rowan Wick, was all right, with two Ks and a walk in one inning. His scoreless ninth tonight lowered his spring/Summer Camp ERA to a scant 14.29.
Magic Number: 4
With four Ks over two scoreless innings, Ross Detwiler kept the game in check after starter Drew Anderson did not have a particularly efficient effort. Depending on health, and how the offensive bench wrangles out, Detwiler may be the 30th man to start the season.
“You guys just started noticing us. I thought you guys forgot about us.”—Tim Anderson left the ESPN “booth” speechless after bringing the fire during his in-game appearance.
First Look: Monday
Dallas Keuchel goes against the Cubs at Sox Park, hoping to ramp up to his desired minimum of (4 ⅔ innings-five innings) and pronounce himself A-OK for his first projected start on Saturday against the Twins.