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South Side Sox Summary: Week 14

I still have no idea what this team is doing

Welcome to the SSS Summary — a little review of what happened this past week in Chicago White Sox baseball, including on-the-field play, the front office jibber-jabber, and everything in-between. Even if you don’t want to remember what happened, sorry, we will tell you anyway.


Oh, South Side Sox friends, it’s been a week. The Pale Hose went 3-4 since the last SSS Summary, and somehow they find themselves a half-game better in the standings. They currently sit in fourth place and 5 1⁄2 games back from the Minnesota Twins AND the Cleveland Guardians, who are tied for first place. Only in the AL Central, folks.

The week didn’t start off too terribly, with a split of the four-game series with the Los Angeles Angels. I honestly expected them to lose three or four of those games, so it was a pleasant surprise when they didn’t. Then, of course, the White Sox were taken to the shed by the Oakland A’s, losing the first two games out there before salvaging the finale.

We’re halfway through the season, and I’m still not 100% sure who this team is and what it can accomplish. Will the White Sox be sellers or buyers? Clearly, the AL Central is there for the taking. Any team that can put together a decent winning streak has a chance for the crown. I guess the only way to tell is just to keep watching!


The Recaps Worth Revisiting

Wednesday, June 28: White Sox 11, Angels 5

It was as if the offense was fueled by gallons of caffeine and acting much more like what we expected it to be. I hope everyone enjoyed it while it lasted. A chunk of the runs came via the long ball in a 17-hit victory. Luis Robert Jr., Eloy Jiménez, and Seby Zavala (twice) went yard, and Andrew Vaughn had a slick, bases-clearing double in the fourth. Lucas Giolitio pitched well, continuing to make his case as the top White Sox trade deadline candidate. He surrendered four runs on four hits in seven innings.

Thursday, June 29: White Sox 9, Angels 7

On the other hand, in the very next game, somehow the Sox managed to score nine runs without the benefit of a single round-tripper. Watching this team manufacture runs was a novel experience; they had five walks on the day as well. Andrew Vaughn got the wheels going with another triple, his second of the season. He’s tied for first place on the squad in three-baggers with Romy González. Who had that on their bingo card? Tim Anderson had two hits and scored two runs, which were encouraging as he started to break out of his slump.

Lance Lynn was, again, not great. He gave up five runs on eight hits in six innings, and Kendall Graveman tried to blow it in the ninth, surrendering a two-run bomb to Shohei Ohtani. The Good Guys prevailed, though, to split the series.

Sunday, July 2: White Sox 8, A’s 7

The White Sox tried everything in their power to get swept by the Oakland A’s but managed to squeak out a W in the final game thanks to a seventh-inning Jake Burger bomb, which proved to be the winning run. Again the South Siders managed to generate some offense by stringing hits together and being patient at the plate, earning five walks. Zach Remillard came up big, going 2-for-4 with two RBIs, and TA looked like he might be coming to life with another two-hit day.

Being short on starters, this was the second of two bullpen games on the week. Touki Toussaint, who the Sox claimed off waivers from the Cleveland Guardians on June 17, was the opener. He was decent enough through 3 2⁄3 innings, giving up two runs on three hits, but struggled with the free passes, handing over four of them.


The Standout Star of the Week

Rookie Takes the Cake

It was a tough pick between Robert and Zach Remillard. The stats give La Pantera the slight edge, but he’s gotten a lot of prior love in the Summary. Therefore, I will bestow this week’s honor on Remillard. Per FanGraphs, Zach had the sixth-best overall offensive week in baseball. He batted .500 and owned a league-best .750 BABIP and .625 OBP on the week. The 29-year-old Remillard has been fantastic since he debuted on June 17, with a slash line of .382/.488/.441 and an OPS of .929.


The Defensive Disport of the Week

Sometimes These are Hard to Find

Pickings were slim as the team had three errors on the week and played bad baseball overall. Remillard did make a nice catch and flip to Tim Anderson to get Mike Moustakas out at second in Wednesday’s win.


The Week’s Top Three Biggest BLASTS

Luis Robert Jr., 444 feet, Wednesday, June 28

La Pantera jacked this two-run dinger to DEEP center field to kick off the scoring and give the Sox the lead in the top of the first inning. They went on to earn the victory, 11-5.

Jake Burger 442 feet, Sunday, July 2

It was great to see Jake break out of his slump on Sunday, when he went 2-for-4. His homer pushed the score to 8-3, which seemed like a cherry on top at the time. However, you’re a Sox fan, so you know how this goes. His knock ended up being the winning run as the A’s surged to score four runs in the final two innings.

Eloy Jiménez 433 feet, Saturday, July 1

In Saturday’s walk-off loss, Eloy went long in the top of the second inning, knotting the score, 1-1. The Big Baby has also improved as of late. During this past week, he slashed .379/.419/.655.


Other Tasty Tidbits

On June 28, ESPN announced that closer Liam Hendriks would receive the Jimmy V Award. He will be recognized on July 12 at the 2023 ESPYS in Los Angels. The award is named after famed North Carolina State University basketball coach Jim Valvano, who died of cancer in 1993.

Luis Robert Jr. had multiple recognitions this week. He was honored as the AL Player of the Week for his outstanding performance when he batted .444 with five RBIs and four home runs. As if that wasn’t enough for La Pantera, he was also named to the 2023 All-Star team. He is the first White Sox center fielder to go since Chet Lemon did so in 1979.


Running Down the Rehabbers

We’ve got a lot going on as far as injuries go. On July 2, the Sox placed Michael Kopech on the 15-day IL with right shoulder inflammation. He is expected to return after the All-Star break. Infielder Romy González was transferred to the 60-day IL. We have not received any additional updates on his injury, other than it is worse than they initially thought. Whatever that means.

Yoán Moncada is still dealing with back soreness, and it’s anticipated that he will return sometime in early August. Liam Hendriks and [redacted] are also expected to return after the All-Star break, while Garrett Crochet is rehabbing in Birmingham and looks to be coming back in early August.


What’s next?

With the Monday off-day, the Sox will play six home games before the All-Star break. First off is a three-game set against the Toronto Blue Jays, who own a record of 45-40. They sit in fourth place in the tough AL East. Next up will be three games versus the St. Louis Cardinals. The Cards are slightly worse than the South Siders; with a record of 35-48, they are in the basement of the NL Central. It’s possible the Sox could steal a few from a team that’s worse than they are, but wait. We all know better than that.


Poll

What was the best game of the week?

This poll is closed

  • 72%
    Wednesday, June 28: The offense awakens from the dead, win 11-5
    (8 votes)
  • 9%
    Thursday, June 29: Wheels Vaughn hits a triple, win 9-7
    (1 vote)
  • 18%
    Sunday, July 2: Burger’s back, win 8-7
    (2 votes)
11 votes total Vote Now

Poll

What was the worst game of the week?

This poll is closed

  • 18%
    Monday, June 26: Cease’s wasted effort, 2-1 loss
    (2 votes)
  • 0%
    Tuesday, June 27: Kopech has ANOTHER short outing, 4-2 loss
    (0 votes)
  • 45%
    Friday, June 30: Bullpen blows, 7-4 loss
    (5 votes)
  • 36%
    Saturday, July 1: A’s walk it off in extras, 7-6 loss
    (4 votes)
11 votes total Vote Now

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