Is Vince Velasquez good? Well, he’s doing everything we need him to do as the fifth starter and more! In five innings of work, Vince gave up three hits, one run, two walks, and he struck out two batters.
The one run he did give up occurred in his last outing of work. To lead off the bottom of the frame, Alex Verdugo doubled over the head of Luis Robert. After securing a Bobby Dalbec pop out for out number one, Jackie Bradley Jr. doubled off the Green Monster to send Verdugo home.
To end the inning, Vince stranded Bradley Jr. at third and struck out Trevor Story swinging.
A solid evening of work for Vince Velasquez. pic.twitter.com/Ph3WoLzy13— Chicago White Sox (@whitesox) May 7, 2022
Nathan Eovaldi struggled (in his definition of “struggle”) today. In his first inning of work, Tim Anderson led off the game with a single, José Abreu singled, and Yasmani Grandal walked against the guy who reigns at the top 7% of the league in walk percentage. With the bases loaded and two outs, Eovaldi struck out Gavin Sheets, but he was in for a long evening.
The South Siders got their momentum going once again in the third inning. Once again, TA7 led the inning of with a single, he found himself at third base after an AJ Pollock single to left field, and Abreu drove Tim home for a 1-0 lead via a sacrific fly to Jackie Bradley Jr. in right field.
With one on and one out, Luis Robert took a low-and-in pitch over the Green Monster and out of the park for a two-run shot! This gave the Good Guys a 3-0 lead!
Nathan settled down after allowing a three-run third, but he totaled six hits, three runs, and three walks (two to Grandal, of course) in his five innings of work. He did strike out four and left his team a chance to win, but it was nice to see the White Sox get to the Red Sox ace.
With Eovaldi out of the game, the Sox kept their offensive momentum. They loaded the bases for the second time in the game in the sixth inning: Jake Burger walk, Reese McGuire fielder’s choice, Leury García single, and Tim Anderson single. AJ Pollock worked a seven-pitch at-bat with two outs, but he struck out on a pitch almost in the other batter’s box. At some point, it would be nice to see the God Guys cashing in on these bases-loaded opportunities.
Into the sevnth-inning stretch, the White Sox were up 3-1.
However, they found some old-fashion baseball in the eighth inning in order to secure an insurance run. Adam Engel, in his second at-bat after pinch hitting and playing right field for Gavin Sheets, singled to open the inning. He stole second as Jake Burger took an 0-1 strike, and he would later line out to right field for Engel to move up to third base. McGuire put the bat on the ball for a sac fly to right field, 4-1 Good Sox as Engel scored.
Why are insurance runs important? In the bottom-half of the eighth, Adam Engel misjudged a ball, and Jarren Duran notched his first triple of the year and scored on a Trevor Stroy ground out against Kendall Graveman for a 4-2 White Sox lead.
Did I mention how important insurance runs are? After AJ Pollock walked to lead off the ninth, he stole second and third base, and Abreu took a fly ball to JBJ in right field, but Jackie was tired off giving up all these sacrifice flies, so on a perfect one-hope throw to home, he gunned Pollock out at the plate, who was unable to tack on another insurance run.
Liam Hendriks, who has been crushing his save opportunities lately, struck out three of the four batters he saw to close the game!
White Sox win 4-2, and Liam Hendriks records his eighth save of the season!
Dylan Cease (3-1, 2.48 ERA) will battle against Nick Pivetta (0-4, 7.84 ERA) for game two of the series at 3:10 p.m. CT tomorrow afternoon — back on NBC Sports Chicago.
For the rest of the evening, enjoy the four-game win streak and victory sunglasses — the first ones of the year for the Ashley Friday recaps (about time)!
As if anything can top the return of Ashley’s sunglasses, with no Six Pack tonight, here are your game polls.
Who was the MVP of Friday’s 4-2 win at Boston?
This poll is closed
Tim Anderson: 3-for-5, R, 2 LOB
Leury García: 2-for-4, 2B, LOB
Luis Robert: 1-for-4, HR, 2 RBI, BB, K, 2 LOB
Vince Velásquez: 5 IP, 3 H, ER, 2 BB, 2 K, WIN
Liam Hendriks: IP, 3 K, BB, SAVE
Who was the Cold Cat tonight in Boston?
This poll is closed
Gavin Sheets: 0-for-2, K, 4 LOB, GIDP
AJ Pollock: 1-for-4, R BB, SB, 2 K, 4 LOB, thrown out at home
Kendall Graveman: IP, 3 H, ER, K, HOLD