It might be time to clean out the pipes, Jerry, as the team’s slide into the excrement continues with its eighth straight loss. With an overall record of 7-19, the Sox are now on pace for a 44-win season which would not only be the worst in franchise history, but a game better than the worst in American League history. Put your waders on, Pale Hose fans, because it seems like an extremely shitty season is inevitable.
Tonight was the second showdown in the battle of the aces. Unfortunately, for the Sox, only one of them didn’t fold. It was Dylan Cease’s sixth outing of the season, and the White Sox were looking to the magical mustache to stop the hemorrhaging. Cease avoided the loss less than a week ago in his last start against these same Tampa Bay Rays, but not today. Tagged with his first defeat of the season, Cease couldn’t even make it out of the fifth. He only went four innings, surrendering seven earned runs on nine hits, two walks, and three strikeouts.
Here are Cease’s pitch visuals from Baseball Theater:
Cease’s 99-pitch, four-inning outing stunk, and looked like this:
The 25-year-old lefty Shane McClanahan also made his sixth start of the season today for the Rays. McClanahan was a first-round, overall 31st pick of Tampa Bay in 2018. The hard-throwing southpaw has absolutely pitched like a first-rounder and ace of the staff as he’s had a superb start to the season with a (now) 5-0 record and a 2.12 ERA. Last season, his second in Tampa, he went 12-8 with a 2.54 ERA, .93 WHIP, and 194 strikeouts in 166 1⁄3 innings over 28 appearances. Today, he was solid, utilizing a four-pitch arsenal in his five-inning outing. He only allowed five hits, two earned runs, two walks, and five strikeouts.
Here are McClanahan’s pitch visuals from Baseball Theater:
McClanahan’s ace-like, 73-pitch, five-inning outing looked like this:
With the burden of a fan base strapped to his back, Yasmani Grandal flew out to center in the bottom of the first, stranding Andrew Vaughn at third and Luis Robert Jr. at second, ending the inning and the scoring threat. The play had an LI of 1.97.
There wasn’t much tension for Tampa Bay throughout this debacle of a game. However, McClanahan felt the most pressure. He had the highest pLI, at 0.88.
With a lined double to center in the top of the second, Luke Raley drove in Isaac Paredes and Josh Lowe, giving the Rays a 3-0 lead. The play had a .156 WPA.
Brandon Lowe was first-rate today for the Rays. He had a .243 WPA.
Hardest hit: Luke Raley welcomed Joe Kelly back from the IL with a solo bomb at 114.3 mph to center field.
Weakest contact: Wander Franco tapped a soft, ninth-inning ground out to Kelly at 62.8 mph.
Luckiest hit: Romy González hit the team’s first triple of the season off position player Luke Raley down the right-field line, scoring Oscar Colás. The three-bagger had a .120 xBA.
Toughest out: Randy Arozarena’s sharp fly out at 103.5 mph to right field in the top of the third had an .800 xBA.
Longest hit: Luke Raley’s round-tripper off Kelly takes the prize here. It landed 432 feet away, in center field.
Magic Number: -58
The South Siders have the third-worst run differential in baseball at -58. Only the Kansas City Royals (by one run) and Oakland A’s are worse.
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 White Sox MVP?
This poll is closed
Jake Burger: 2-for-3, 2 RBI, 1 BB, .131 WPA
Lenyn Sosa: 1-for-4, 1 RBI, .083 WPA
Luis Robert Jr.: 1-for-2, 1 BB, .026 WPA
Who was the White Sox Cold Cat?
This poll is closed
Dylan Cease: 4 IP, 9 H, 7 ER, -.410 WPA
Andrew Benintendi: 0-for-4, 2 Ks, -.069 WPA
Elvis Andrus: 0-for-4, 3 LOB, -.064 WPA