Did you know Chicago White Sox starting pitcher Lucas Giolito and the St. Louis Cardinals starting pitcher Jack Flaherty went to Harvard-Westlake High School and shared the mound for the very first time since their beloved high school days tonight?
Though the two did not directly face off tonight, it was a fun, hyped-up indirect face-off that I was beyond excited about, ever since it became a possibility with the 2021 schedule announcement.
I was happy to see the South Siders run away with this one early to support my favorite player, but I felt for one of my favorite non-White Sox players.
I’m sorry Jack took his 1st loss of the season. I’m happy Lucas got his 4th win. And that’s all there is to say about that. @WhiteSox— Rick Giolito (@RickGiolito) May 26, 2021
Lucas Giolito picked up right where he left off from his last outing against the Twins. He went six innings where he gave up two runs (one earned) off of six hits but zero walks (!), while striking out five.
Lucas’s old high school teammate, Jack Flaherty, did not have his best outing. As a Flaherty stan, I do just want to blame his defense, which left him out to dry for several runs tonight; however, we will look at the full picture (Sorry, Jack, please come to the Sox next year!)
Flaherty went 3 2⁄3 innings and gave up six hits, two walks, and his defense committed three errors which resulted in seven runs (only three earned). He did strike out three, but gave up a long ball.
Don’t worry; I’m still the biggest Lucas Giolito stan.
With the bases loaded in the top of the third, Dylan Carlson hit a 1.92 LI sac fly to break the shutout and trim the lead to 5-1, White Sox.
Thrown into an unexpected save situation in the ninth, Liam Hendriks entered the game with the bases loaded and nobody out, as the infrequently-used Garrett Crochet struggled tonight. However, Hendriks got some payback from his last outing against the Yankees that ended in a walk-off walk: Hendriks struck out the next three batters to secure the save, facing 1.06 pLI total.
The WPAs were quite underwhelming for tonight’s runaway game, so the winner is the .084 WPA generated when Yermín Mercedes reached on an error in the first, which also opened the scoring as Adam Eaton reached home on the play.
Lucas Giolito’s .110 WPA earned his team’s 28th win of the season, and his fourth.
Hardest hit: Paul Goldschmidt lasered a 110.5 mph single to left field, but he tried to stretch the hit for a double and got nailed at second base by a fantastic throw from Andrew Vaughn, who has been a natural in left field (big Vaughn stan, too).
José Abreu almost matched Paul’s first inning hardest-hit, with his 110.3 mph, two-run blast in the fourth inning.
Weakest contact: The power hitter Yermín Mercedes channeled his alter ego for a 57.8 mph ground out in the fourth.
Luckiest hit: Without a doubt, Dylan Carlson’s .050 xBA, 65.4 mph single in the eighth off of Evan Marshall wins this award by far.
Toughest out: Marked as an error in the first, Mercedes’ .740 xBA would beg to differ. Error aside, Lane Thomas’ .640 xBA line out against Codi Heuer in the seventh officially takes the win in this category.
Longest hit: Of course, Abreu’s two-run blast went for 420 feet, which served to bring in two runs and is tonight’s longest hit.
Magic Number: 22
A full 22/92 pitches (24%) were sliders for Lucas Giolito, which accounted for a 45% called strikes-whiff percentage. As a predominantly two-pitch pitcher, the more Lucas hones his slider, the more dangerous he becomes — which is beyond exciting.
Hard-hit is any ball off the bat at 95 mph or more
LI measures pressure per play
pLI measures total pressure faced in game
Whiff a swing-and-miss
WPA win probability added measures contributions to the win
xBA expected batting average
Who was pumped to be Lucas’ teammate tonight?
This poll is closed
Lucas Giolito: 6.0 IP, 6 H, 2 R, 1 ER, 5 SO
Liam Hendriks: 1.0 IP, 3 SO, 1 S
José Abreu: 2-for-5, 1 R, 4 RBI, 1 SO, 5 LOB
Nick Madrigal: 3-for-4, 1 R, 1 RBI, 1 LOB
Who is ready for the next Giolito start?
This poll is closed
Tim Anderson: 0-for-5, 1 R, 1 SO, 5 LOB
Garrett Crochet: 0.0 IP, 1 H, 2 BB
Codi Heuer: 1.0 IP, 2 H, 1 R
Yermín Mercedes: 0-for-4, 1 SO, 3 LOB
South Side Sox Roll Call
In a 201-comment gamethread, Trooper Galactus prevailed in a tight battle, with 28.
|3||Right Size Wrong Shape||24|
|17||South Side Expat||3|
|23||Mark P. Liptak||2|
The only green and tonight’s winner by a landslide? The crazy-great news brought by Brett Ballantini, about the stellar SSS site performance over the past week: