The White Sox dropped their sixth game in a row, losing to the Guardians, 6-3, as they barrel towards rock bottom at 41-63, 13 games out of first. They’re not quite on Kansas City’s level, but it honestly doesn’t feel too far off. Now that Lucas Giolito has been traded, the White Sox are going to be relying Dylan Cease to step up and be the ace we know he can be. Tonight was most definitely not his best ... but I guess he’s had worse?
Cease threw his fastball the majority of the time, but surprise surprise, it was the trusty slider that was the most effective, with a 48% CSW (Called Strike Plus Whiff rate). Basically, hitters couldn’t touch it when they swung at it, which was more than half the time the slider was thrown. Dylan struck out five, and his two walks were poorly timed, leading to a run scored in the third — but it didn’t help that the Guardians couldn’t stop getting hits. Cease ultimately lasted 5 2⁄3 innings, and gave up nine hits that led to four runs — that 4.00+ ERA is here to stay, sadly.
Steven Kwan and Andrés Giménez packed a quick 1-2 punch in the first, with a triple and double to start the game and put the Guardians up one. Kwan sparked another rally in the third inning, allowing Josh Naylor to confirm that he still owns the White Sox, with a two-run double to show for it. Cease couldn’t control the madness, walking two batters and giving up another RBI single to give Cleveland a clean four-run lead. A four-run deficit you say? Pack it up, we’re not winning this one — not with this team.
The defense had its struggles tonight with a few errors, but outside of Jake Burger, the offense didn’t have much more to add, giving Cleveland’s Tanner Bibee another quality start. The top of the order for the White Sox was essentially dormant for the entire game, and outside of Andrew Benintendi’s walk he, Tim Anderson, and Luis Robert Jr. all combined to go 0-for-11 — pretty pathetic if you ask me. The rest of the lineup — even Gavin Sheets, who pinch-hit in the ninth — got at least one hit.
It was the Burger Show, however, as he got on base three times tonight, walking once before blasting two moonshots to both sides of the stands. He scored twice, and drove in all three South Side runs: 2-for-3, with two bombs and three RBIs ... not a bad day, if you ask me. More of this please, Jake! Less of getting picked off at first base ... which also happened, in the seventh, in another classic case of poor base running from the White Sox. At least he’s mashing homers, and seems to be one of the only players who seems like he is actually having fun (or trying to).
Aaron Bummer was the chosen one for the seventh inning, having a vintage Bummer outing (not good), hitting the first batter he faced and giving up an RBI double before Gregory Santos had to come in and clean up his mess. But Santos got into a similar situation in the very next inning, giving up a “double” and a quick RBI single to get Cleveland their final run. Who caused all of this late-inning terror? None other than Josh and Bo Naylor.
This really was a stupid double, though.
We seriously can’t get away from these guys.
Sammy Peralta was called up from the Charlotte Knights today, and even made an appearance to pitch the ninth inning. All things considered, he did a decent job. Peralta walked one and gave up a hit, but he struck out two and there was no damage done.
The Pale Hose tried to battle back in the ninth, with Oscar Colás and Gavin Sheets starting a two-out rally to bring the tying run to the plate — leadoff hitter Andrew Benintendi. Benny ended up striking out looking — how anticlimactic. Swing the bat, please! Benintendi put us out of our misery, and sealed the six-game losing streak. This is truly the worst ride I’ve ever been on.
Tomorrow night, the White Sox will face off with the Guardians at 6:10 p.m. on Apple TV+.
Six Pack of Stats
Yasmani Grandal came up to bat in a key situation in the bottom of the sixth with runners on first and second, but he choked and struck out to end the inning, with 2.99 LI.
Jake Burger faced the most pressure of anyone in tonight’s game, compiling a 1.44 pLI.
Jake Burger’s two-run shot in the fifth was the top play, at 18.2% WPA.
Andrés Giménez went 2-for-4 with an RBI double and two runs scored good for a 20.7% WPA.
The second Burger Bomb left the bat at 109.2 mph.
Andrés Giménez’s single in the third was tapped at just 28.8 mph.
Josh Naylor’s ridiculous seventh-inning double not only left the bat at 57.5 mph, it had just an .070 xBA.
Steven Kwan flied out in the sixth despite a .900 xBA.
Magic Number: 6
South Side pitchers gave up six runs tonight, Aaron Bummer’s ERA is more than six (6.69 — nice), and secured a pitiful six-game losing streak. What a time to be a White Sox fan, am I right?
Who was the White Sox MVP tonight?
This poll is closed
Jake Burger (2B): 2-for-3, 2 HR, 3 RBI, 2 R, BB, PK, .202 WPA
Sammy Peralta: IP, H, BB, 2 K
Gavin Sheets (PH): 1-for-1 in ninth inning
Who was the Cold Cat for the White Sox?
This poll is closed
Everyone except Burger
Dylan Cease: 5 2⁄3 IP, 9 H, 4 ER, 2 BB, 5 K, -.168 WPA
Aaron Bummer: 2⁄3 IP, H, ER, K, -.099 WPA
Andrew Benintendi (LF): 0-for-4, BB, K looking to end the game, -.117 WPA