The outcome of this game was never in question, as the White Sox (15-11) raced out to an early lead against the Tigers (9-14). While the offense exploded, Lucas Giolito pitched a masterpiece. Everything clicked for the White Sox during today’s 9-0 victory.
Play of the game
In terms of wins probability added (WPA), the first inning walk to Edwin Encarnación was the most important play of the game, with a WPA of +.083. Encarnación’s walk was the third of the inning for the White Sox, and it forced in the first run of the game.
After a disappointing performance against the Cardinals that boosted his ERA to 4.88, Lucas Giolito came through with a dominant performance. After today’s performance, Giolito’s ERA sits at 3.89, and the advanced peripherals indicate that he has been on the unlucky side. Giolito’s FIP is 3.23, while his xFIP is 3.41. In 2019, a huge year for Giolito, his FIP (3.43) and xFIP (3.66) were both a bit higher than they are this season.
Only three of nine runs cross the plate on homers
The White Sox continued to hit the ball out of the park, as they hit two home runs during the victory. Tim Anderson hit a home run, his sixth of the season, while Eloy Jiménez launched his eighth of the year. However, prior to those home runs, the White Sox had already put quite a few runs on the board. In fact, they scored two-thirds of their runs today without the help of the home run. It is nice to see the offense deliver such a high-scoring game without relying on the long ball.
José Abreu went 3-for-5 with two doubles this afternoon, yet another White Sox hitter with a great game. Statcast was also a fan of Abreu’s performance, as both of Abreu’s doubles had a lightning fast exit velocity (108.6 mph and 110.0 mph).
Good times roll
The White Sox have won five consecutive games, putting their record at 15-11. Even though we are still in the first half of the shortened season, this is not the White Sox’s longest winning streak. Earlier this season, the White Sox had a winning streak of six games (7/29-8/4). They will try to match that streak against the Cubs tomorrow.
With a WPA of .241, Giolito is today’s MVP. Giolito displayed excellent control and command, as he struck out 13 while only walking one in seven innings. The Tigers struggled to make sharp contact, as they only got three hits. Also, the Tigers only put two of Giolito’s pitches in play with an exit velocity of over 95 mph. It is tough to perform better than Giolito did this afternoon.