The game was rough, and you might come away from it feeling like it was somehow more than just one loss. But after a 6-1 loss in a game that the White Sox were never in, it’s still just a 1-0 Houston lead. Steal a win tomorrow, and suddenly Chicago is sitting pretty.
The top of the first was not ideal, not because our offense looked bad, but because FS1 made hundreds of people miss TA’s at bat (which I’m told might be a good thing).
FS1 is figuratively killing me— Herb Lawrence (@Ecnerwal23) October 7, 2021
While Lance McCullers Jr. went 1-2-3, he is probably not thrilled with giving up 17 pitches in the first inning thanks to a long Abreu at-bat (you thought he wouldn’t play today, didn’t you? No, really, you did?). The boys made good in-the-air contact, though, which seemed to be a good sign.
Lance Lynn started the inning with a strikeout to José Altuve on a swinging slider. HAH. The next two batters were also retired on hits to TA and Leury García, who started at second base today.
Grandal struck out in in the top of the second, followed by a wild pitch that hit Robert in the hand (and yes, McCullers had the audacity to think Robert was faking it), making Luis the first baserunner of the game. Unfortunately, Robert was caught stealing at second which ended the inning.
Lance labored in the bottom of the second with a leadoff walk to Yordan Alvarez and a long at-bat that ended up in a swinging strikeout of Yuli Gurriel. Carlos Correa got the first hit of the game with a base hit between first and second. Jake Meyers drove in the first run with a single to right field. Everyone panicked, but Lynn ended the inning by striking out Maldonado. IT’S FINE GUYS JUST SCORE SOME RUNS.
There were never going to be any shutouts against this offense. Sox need to score to win this series.— WhiteSoxTwitt3r (@SoxTwitt3r) October 7, 2021
Scoring didn’t happen in the top of the second, though, with another 1-2-3 inning for McCullers. Whatever. #BanTheShift. Get it second time through the order.
The Astros scored two more in the bottom of the third because of a questionable decision by Yoán Moncada attempting to throw Altuve out at home, letting Alex Bregman reach first safely for Alvarez to drive in later. Lance finally got out of the inning, but not without a high pitch count that found ReyLo warming up in the pen.
The White Sox got their first hit of the game with a Moncada single in the top of the fourth, but the national broadcasters reminded us that Abreu will probably hit into a double play, so Astros fans don’t have to be worried (oh, what was that? Jose didn’t GIDP?). The White Sox were still unable to score, though, which sucks.
Lance came out in the bottom of the fourth after giving up two more runs. Lopez came in, ending this inning from hell.
Lance Lynn went 3.2 IP, 6 H, 5 ER, 2 BB, 4 K, 0 HR, 46 of 76 pitches for strikes, with seven swinging strikes.— James Fegan (@JRFegan) October 7, 2021
He was regularly working through trouble after leadoff walk in the second inning. Five-straight 100+ mph exit velocities in the fourth.
Robert got a hit (barely) in the top of the fifth, and then nothing else good happened.
At this point in the game, people were wondering, was Lynn the right choice for Game 1? On the one hand, he has the most playoff experience and was our best pitcher this year, although regular season performance doesn’t always correlate with the postseason. On the other hand, Lynn has been rocked by Houston this year, unlike Lucas Giolito, and pitching Game 2 with a 1-0 lead might have been a better plan. On the third hand (we have those now), we could just have not shown up or have Dallas Keuchel pitch every game. IDK. Oh, there goes an Alvarez home run.
Anyway, this tweet is nice:
I see the Sox game isn’t going so well. Please allow my favorite tree, which is shining brightly today, to provide some mental levity to any anxiety you may be feeling at the moment. #Changethegame pic.twitter.com/QCZ6zYJcqJ— Spooky FitzMagic (SoxFanWingMan) (@CheapSeats411) October 7, 2021
... but, still 6-0.
The White Sox don’t control my mood I control my mood The White Sox don’t control my mood I control my mood The White Sox don’t control my mood I control my mood The White Sox don’t control my mood I control my mood The White Sox don’t control my mood I control my mood The— Dan Ryan (@ryan35th) October 7, 2021
What if ... hear me out ... Adam Eaton pitched Game 1?
Garret Crochet came in to pitch the bottom of the sixth, and from the looks of it, he shaved his facial hair. He also gave up no runs, which was good, too.
Abreu got a base hit in the top of the seventh, but I couldn’t see what Grandal did after him because FS1 cut to commercials in the middle of the inning. When it cut back in, Eloy got a base hit, but the inning ended on a Sheets ground out.
In the bottom of the seventh, Crochet and José Ruiz combined to retire the side. The highlight of this inning was that we actually got to watch the game without commercial interruptions.
Timmy got a two-out single in the top of the eighth, but as JoJo says, it was too little too late. Or was it? Leave it to our RBI King, Abreu, to drive in the first run of the game, spoiling the shutout.
Ruiz got us out of the bottom of the 8th, which is the exact kind of low-leverage mastery we expect from him.
Jose Ruiz should’ve started— Intoxicated Sox Fan (@IntoxSoxFan) October 7, 2021
Luis Robert led off the top of the ninth with a bloop to shallow right field. Unfortunately, Eloy was still completely lost at the plate and struck out looking on a terrible at-bat. Sheets, on the other hand, had a great at-bat, but got completely rung up by the ump on a terrible check swing call that even had the Astros-loving announcers wondering what the hell was he doing? The game ended with a ground out from Adam Engel, and sadness for all.
Friends, turn your TVs off, don’t listen to ARod’s incoherent babblings, and get your rest because it’s Gio day tomorrow, and early. Catch the game at 1:07 p.m. on FS1 or listen to Len on the radio, because that’s obviously the superior option. Go Sky.