Happy Saturday, Sox fans! Isn’t it great, preparing to watch a weekend of games with no stress, knowing that when Thursday rolls around, the South Siders will be in the field of eight to get to the World Series? It’s a long, calm exhale after six months of tense games!
Today, the American League Central Division champion Chicago White Sox (92-68) will play the third-place Detroit Tigers (76-84). Detroit can’t finish any higher than third place, but could be caught by the Royals and finish in a tie for third if the Tigers get swept this weekend, and the Royals sweep.
As you might imagine, in spite of Detroit’s mini-sweep of two games last week, White Sox have DOMINATED the Tigers this year, winning 11 of 17.
On the verge of season’s end, let’s look at some White Sox season numbers:
- Never more than 2 1⁄2 games out of first this season
- Will end the year having been in first place for 152 days (130 games)
- Have thrown 13 shutouts vs. opponents’ 11
- Have nine walk-off wins vs. opponents’ eight
- With the recovery at the end of September, with a win today the White Sox will be assured of a winning record in every month of the season
Parting is such sweet sorrow
that I shall say goodnight till it be morrow.
Okay, after countless gamethreads good and bad this season, lineups both curious and dominant, I’ve reached my final thread of the season. So without further adieu, let’s take a look at what the HOFBP has in store for us on the penultimate game of the 2021 regular season:
Tim Anderson, who will sit three games to start next season for merely touching an ump in a scrum, during which the ump was touching and pushing players himself, looks to stay hot. Is another 4-for-4 (5-for-5 on base) day in the offing? Hey, TA, let’s make it a positively Yerminesque 8-for-8 to end the regular season; you’ve got .300 cinched for another season, anyway.
How about we don’t take bets on which player in the lineup today unnecessarily risks injury, Yasmani Grandal or Adam Engel?
On the bump, it’s Lucas Giolito, and if Carlos Rodón can’t go (and it’s hard to make a guy barely able to scrape five innings your No. 1 starter for the playoffs) Lucas is your best bet for the opener. Lance Lynn is the popular favorite out there, but he had one of his worst games of the season in Houston in the first half, while Giolito was two-thirds to a perfect game in 2020’s Game 1. You never want to root against history, but let’s hope Lucas lets a harmless single squeeze through the infield in the first inning, because we don’t need extra toll on his arm, and the HOFBP has already taxed his rotation horses too hard. Five innings and out, Lucas!
As for the Tigers, okay, they’ve stolen my word for lineups today:
The word of the day is penultimate.— Detroit Tigers (@tigers) October 2, 2021
As in here’s our penultimate lineup of the season. pic.twitter.com/ocODeCNEuM
Only suspense there is whether, like Anderson (in a much brighter sense), will future Hall of Fame Baseball Person Miguel Cabrera keep his streak going? Four strikeouts yesterday. Wonder what the name for eight straight Ks is. A double sombrero? Wait, got it: Detroit fans hate it when you call Cabrera “Cabby,” so if Miguel whiffs four more times today, let’s deem it a Cabby. Or, just call Cabrera “Cabby” until he retires, five or six years from now when his onerous contract finally runs out.
Ballgame time is 6:10. Usual broadcast suspects.