Though the White Sox faced a 3-1 deficit after a homer by Jeimer Candelario, they were able to rally in the latter innings. Once again, the White Sox used the long ball to get the victory.
Play of the game
In terms of wins probability added (WPA), the go-ahead solo homer by José Abreu in the eighth inning was the most important play of the game. Abreu’s fifth home run of the young season had a sizable WPA of .287.
In his major league debut, Dane Dunning lasted 4 ⅓ innings, and he racked up seven strikeouts. Though Dunning allowed a three-run homer in the fifth, he had delivered four excellent, scoreless innings prior to the rough fifth. Had Dunning been removed just a couple of batters earlier, his line would have been fantastic.
Like Dunning, Tigers starting pitcher, Casey Mize also made his major league debut tonight. Mize pitched 4 ⅓ innings, allowed three runs (all earned), and had seven strikeouts. Dunning had the same number of innings pitched, runs allowed, and strikeouts. As a result of the starters’ similarities, this one came down to the bullpens.
Bullpen slams the door
Sure, Edwin Encarnación hit two homers. Yes, Abreu launched a clutch homer of his own. Also, Tim Anderson and Yoán Moncada came through with RBI singles. But, the relievers had a fantastic game, and it is one that we cannot overlook or take for granted. Matt Foster, Steve Cishek, Evan Marshall, and Alex Colomé combined for 5 ⅔ innings, allowing zero runs on zero hits. Can’t do much better than that. Foster has yet to allow a run, and he is up to 12 1⁄3 innings on the season. Colomé has yet to allow a run, as well, and he has given the White Sox nine innings of relief this year.
Through 25 games, or about 42% of the shortened 2020 season, the White Sox sit at 14-11. According to FanGraphs, tonight’s victory boosted the White Sox’s odds of making the expanded playoffs to 87.6%.
With a win probability added of .248, Abreu earned player of the game honors. Abreu got the first White Sox hit with a single in the bottom of the first. But, his second hit of the game was far more important. With the game tied 3-3 in the eighth, Abreu stepped up to the plate with the bases empty and one out. Abreu took a 97 mph pitch up in the zone out to right field to put the White Sox ahead by a run. That solo homer turned out to be the decisive run in tonight’s victory.