This time, the White Sox actually held a lead (twice, for a half-inning each time) and were buoyed by another nice appearance from Matt Foster (as the opener). But a four-run fifth from St. Louis put the White Sox in the rearview mirror for good, as the offense shut down almost completely (six hits for the entire doubleheader).
Matt Foster served again as a sort of bullpen day/opener, and again flourished. We’re one game under with the rookie; where would we be without him? Two innings, zeroes otherwise, aside from three Ks. Game score: 54. And while that might not sound like much, there have been just five starts (out of 19 non-Foster starts) better this season. Yep, Foster per game score is the second-best starter on the White Sox, right behind Dallas Keuchel.
Jake Woodford wasn’t much more of an opener for St. Louis, lasting just three innings but giving up just a solo homer to Luis Robert in terms of true damage. His 50 game score is just a shade worse than average for White Sox opponents this year.
Jimmy Cordero did not have his best day, ushering in the eventual game-winning rally for St. Louis in the fifth. Within that, his wild pitch to Harrison Bader with one out pushing Tommy Edman to second base, was a 3.14 LI play. And the worst was yet to come.
Unsurprisingly given the above, and the lead melting on Cordero’s watch, Mr. Biceps faced the highest total leverage for the game, at 2.27 pLI.
When Tyler O’Neill homered off of Evan Marshall with two outs in the fifth, putting the Cardinals up, 5-3, it not only provided the eventual winning runs — it generated .330 WPA, tops in the game.
Despite the heroics of Paul Goldschmidt (.299 WPA) and O’Neill (.298), the game MVP goes to Eloy Jiménez (.313 WPA), essentially the only real offense of the game for the White Sox, going 2-for-3 with a two-run homer.
Magic Number: .129
In the doubleheader, six key members of the White Sox offense played in both games and came up empty. Tim Anderson, Yoán Moncada, José Abreu, Yasmani Grandal, Edwin Encarnación and Nomar Mazara combined to go 0-for-29, with 10 Ks and four walks. That’s, of course, a .000 batting average — and a .129 on-base percentage.