On Friday night, two bottom-dwelling teams faced off in a ballpark full of fans who hate the people that run their teams.
No, the White Sox were not at home ... there is another team just like us!
The Athletics might be in last place and occupy worst-in-baseball status, but that didn’t mean this game was a guaranteed win, because it was also a bullpen game.
The game started with an Andrew Benintendi double, followed by two easy outs. By pitch 23, the bases were loaded, with one run in, and a mound visit for Luis Medina. Unfortunately, Gavin Sheets left everyone stranded with a fly out near the warning track gloved by Brent Rooker. Failing to capitalize again in the second, with four walks in the first two frames, Chicago left the bases loaded yet in both innings.
After Tanner Banks handed the A’s a dreaded leadoff walk to open the Oakland second, things just fell apart from there. Tim Anderson seemed unaware at a play second for what should’ve been an easy out, and the A’s exploited the lapse as Shea Langeliers singled with two on and no outs to tie the game in the second. A sac fly put the A’s up by one, Tony Kemp tripled to send Langeliers home, and suddenly the lead seemed insurmountable, with just the one out. Kemp came home with the fourth run of the inning with another sac fly.
Despite another triple for Oakland in the third, Banks & Co. were able to shut the A’s down, leaving the pest, Brent Rooker, alone at third.
White Sox allowing 2 triples in a game— Christopher Kamka (@ckamka) July 1, 2023
2 times this road trip
2 times from 2020-22
Jesse Scholtens started getting loose in the bottom of the fourth, as Banks continued to struggle and the White Sox couldn’t see the ball ... or whatever the excuse is.
Tim Anderson strikes out a third time to end the fourth. He struck out on three pitches, all takes on middle of the plate offerings, with two runners on in the second.— Daryl Van Schouwen (@CST_soxvan) July 1, 2023
White Sox hitting coach Jose Castro was ejected in between innings after arguing about the third strike call on TA, so at least someone on the White Sox had some fight.
While the White Sox continued their inefficiency — 1-for-7 with runners in scoring position at middgame — reliever Scholtens hung a 1-2 pitch with two outs in the fifth to Carlos Pérez, putting the A’s up by four.
It took the slumping Jake Burger entering the game in the top of the eighth to start to shake the malaise off of the White Sox, swinging at a first pitch for a base hit, pushing Andrew Vaughn (single) to second. One out later, Elvis Andrus singled to load the bases with one out. With two dead after Zach Remillard looked at a third strike, Andrew Benintendi doubled off the wall in right field, sending Vaughn and Burger home.
With Tim Anderson up to keep the rally moving, he struck out yet again, finishing the game 0-for-5 with four strikeouts.
Sadly, Scholtens came back for the eighth in hopes of saving the bullpen, but Jace Peterson singled up the middle to drive in two runs and the White Sox are again down by four heading into the ninth.
Luis Robert Jr. launched home run No. 24 to keep the White Sox within three. Better than nothing, yeah? No? Yeesh.
Sadly, that was not enough to save the team, as Eloy Jiménez flied out to center, Vaughn was beat to first, and Yasmani Grandal struck out.
The White Sox have an afternoon game tomorrow at 3:07 CT. Dylan Cease takes the mound to face off against James Kaprielian.
Who was your White Sox MVP?
This poll is closed
Eloy Jiménez: 2-for-3, R, 2 RBI, BB
Luis Robert Jr.: 3-for-5, 2 R, K
Yasmani Grandal: 2-for-5, R, RBI, 2 K
Who was your White Sox Cold Cat?
This poll is closed
Dylan Cease: 6 H, 3 ER, 3 BB, 5 K
Jake Burger: 0-for-4, BB, 2 K
Elvis Andrus: Game-ending fielding error