Well, that wasn’t pretty.
The Colorado Rockies have came to Guaranteed Rate Field and split the short series, winning 3-0 against the Chicago White Sox this afternoon. The Cleveland Guardians beat the Los Angeles Angels this afternoon, 5-3, so their lead in the AL Central moves to four games.
Things started off shaky for Dylan Cease, with back-to-back singles to Ryan McMahon and Yonathan Daza to open the game. With two outs, Cease induced a walk to load the bases, but got out of it without any scoring.
Cease started off the second with the dreaded leadoff walk to Michael Toglia, and Alan Trejo made him pay with a double to score Toglia and make it 1-0. Daza continued the scoring with a single to score Trejo and make it a quick 2-0 lead against one of the league's best. You could already tell it just wasn’t our day.
Kyle Freeland had an outstanding start, breezing through the first few innings. He allowed a few baserunners, but wriggled out of it each time. The problem for our pitcher was that his pitch count was already high, as early as the third inning.
In the bottom of the fourth inning the South Siders threatened, as Eloy Jiménez singled and Andrew Vaughn walked to start the inning. With two outs, Seby Zavala came close to giving the White Sox the lead on a three-run home run, but instead his fly died at the warning track in left field. The energy shifted in about 30 seconds because as soon as that happened, José Ramírez hit a two-run home run for the Guardians to give them the lead in their game, so it just wasn’t the best moment.
The scoring didn’t stop for the Rockies, as they moved to 3-0 after one more in the top of the fifth inning off of Cease; McMahon hit a double and CJ Cron hit a single to score him from second base.
Jake Diekman replaced Cease to start the sixth inning, so Cease went five innings with six hits, three runs, two walks, and eight strikeouts, pushing his ERA up to 2.16.
The good news is the bullpen had a good day, as Diekman threw a scoreless inning. Joe Kelly took the seventh, striking out the side. Freeland stayed out there for the bottom of the seventh, but was replaced after a walk to Zavala and two-out single to Elvis Andrus. Freeland had a great day, picking up the win and going 6 2⁄3 innings with seven hits, three walks, and five strikeouts. Carlos Estévez replaced Freeland, and immediately stifled the threat as he struck out Yoán Moncada to end the inning.
José Ruiz and Vince Velasquez each threw scoreless innings for the White Sox in the top of the eighth and ninth innings, and in the bottom of the ninth Rockies closer Daniel Bard entered the game and struck out the side for the win.
I wish I could include some highlight videos or at least something into this story, but honestly, there are none.
Unfortunately, it seems like nothing is going our way right now. When we win, the Guardians win. When we lose, we lose ground because the Guardians just keep winning. That’s why tomorrow is so important. We will travel to Cleveland and play one game against the Guardians at Progressive Field in what is a must-win — if not for the standings’ sake, for the fact that one more Cleveland win clinches the tiebreaker over the White Sox this year. Thus, if the White Sox lose tomorrow, they won’t be five games back in the standings, but six, because the Guardians will win the division if the two teams finish 2022 tied.
Lance Lynn is on the mound against rookie call-up Hunter Gaddis. It will be a 12:10 p.m. CT start time. See you tomorrow, for one of the most important games of the season!