After a brutal 1-0 loss to drop a series to the Pittsburgh Pirates yesterday, the White Sox bounced back and outlasted the Minnesota Twins to pick up their first win of the series, 4-3. Their first game in AL Central division play might have been a bit rocky, but the White Sox were able to get the bats going just enough to scrape by with a win.
Dylan Cease had another quality start today, securing his second win of the year, and establishing his dominance as the White Sox Ace. The defense was working overtime to try to ruin his quality outing, with three errors in the game, but he worked his way out of it, giving up just one earned run in the process. In his five innings, Cease gave up three hits, two walks, and ultimately struck out six — including striking out the side so beautifully in the first inning. He’s now 2-0 on the year, and his ERA sits at a very pretty 1.65.
Here’s Cease’s Pitcher Report from Baseball Theater:
Cease relied heavily on his slider and fastball today, combining for 76% of his pitches. Neither were as effective as they usually are, and there were definitely quite a few sliders that missed the zone, and we can see in the breakout below that the slider had the least amount of pitches make it in the zone (Zone% just 44%). Out of the 41 sliders thrown, Cease had 10 called strikes + whiffs, bringing his CSW to just 24%. His fastball was slightly more successful in this sense, achieving a 27% CSW. While Cease definitely wasn’t 100% today, he proves that he can still battle through some tough situations, including a bases-loaded jam in the third.
Cease’s 98-pitch outing looked like this:
Kenta Maeda took the mound today for the Twins, and the White Sox were able to hand him his second loss of the year. He went for six innings, giving up eight hits — including a moon shot from Hanser Alberto — four earned runs and three strikeouts, bringing his overall ERA to 4.09. Maeda also didn’t have a particularly strong outing, throwing his splitter 33% of time, only producing a 15% CSW, with only 33% ending up in the zone. Maybe he should have thrown that one a bit less, but hey, I’m no expert here.
Here’s the pitch mix, from Baseball Theater:
Overall, Maeda’s 83 pitches broke down like this:
Reynaldo López struck out Michael A. Taylor in the bottom of the eighth with the tying runner in scoring position. This play had a 4.09 LI — whew, ReyLo!
Reynaldo López also faced the most pressure today, and he proved he was able to take the heat. He had a 2.92 pLI.
Let’s marvel in his beautiful save:
Hanser Alberto’s three-run bomb in the fourth to put the South Siders up, 4-1, was the top play today, which had a .232 WPA.
Hanser Alberto goes yard! pic.twitter.com/OCKleazy2D— White Sox Talk (@NBCSWhiteSox) April 10, 2023
Surprise, surprise! Reynaldo López is also today’s top performer, with an overall .297 WPA.
Hardest hit: Elvis Andrus’ single in the fourth left the bat at 108.2 mph.
Weakest contact: Elvis Andrus had a rough day, and that included a weak, 58.4 mph grounder for a force out in the third inning.
Luckiest hit: Yasmani Grandal had the luckiest hit today, as his fourth-inning single had a .110 xBA.
Toughest out: Willi Casto was robbed of a base hit by Elvis Andrus in the bottom of the second, with a .700 xBA.
Longest hit: Andrew Vaughn sent one deep in the fourth, but flew out near the warning track at 396 feet. The ball that left the bat at nearly 102 mph, with a .670 xBA ... that’s a hang wiff ’em.
Magic Number: 1
The bullpen gave up just one hit. Hanser Alberto’s one home run sealed the game. Dylan Cease had just one earned run, and his ERA still remains near one (yes, 1.65 is close enough).
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 the MVP in today’s win?
This poll is closed
Reynaldo López: 1 1⁄3 IP, Save, 0 hit, 3 K, .292 WPA
Hanser Alberto: 1-for-4, H, HR, 3 RBI, 2 LOB, .147 WPA
Yasmani Grandal: 2-for-4, 2 H, 2B, RBI, K, 2 LOB, .152 WPA
Bullpen: 4 IP, H, 7 K, 0 BB, 3 Hold, Save
Dylan Cease: 5 IP, W, 3 H, ER, 2 BB, 6 K
Who was the Cold Cat in today’s win?
This poll is closed
Luis Robert Jr.: 0-for-4, K, 1 LOB, -.068 WPA
Leadoff Spot (Tim/Romy): 0-for-5, 3 K, 3 LOB, -.049 average WPA
White Sox Defense: 3 errors, looked clueless half of the time, Tim Anderson got hurt, worst cutoff of the year