Every time you think the season has finally hit bottom, the White Sox find a new low. The Royals came into today half a game behind Oakland in the standings, which would seem almost impossible, but they were way, way, way better than the White Sox.
Did I say way, way, way better? The gap was much bigger than that.
While Sox hitters were totally mystified by Cole Ragans, as the lefty retired the first 13 to the plate before a bloop single by Yoán Moncada that was erased by a double play. The only other baserunner against Ragans came in the sixth, and was a matter of thespian skills on the part of Oscar Colás rather than batting ones, when he pretended he was hit by a pitch that didn’t even look particularly close.
No Sox batter hit the ball hard against Ragans. Or even more than soft.
Yes, it’s true the Sox scored a run after Ragans left the game. Of course, it was unearned, thanks to a bad flip by the K.C. sub at first on a Trayce Thompson grounder that followed a Lenyn Sosa double. Whoopee!
Meanwhile, the Royals, 28th in MLB in runs per game, scored in each of the first five innings off of Jesse Scholtens, topping things off with a seven-run fifth in which Declan Cronin and Sammy Peralta helped serve up batting practice. K.C. coasted after that, substituting freely and enjoying the day.
Were there no highlights, you ask? Of course there were. For example, in addition to Ragans’ performance, Edward Olivares had two homers.
Oh, you mean highlights for the White Sox. Well, they did hold the Royals to 16 hits. And Peralta settled down fairly well after giving up three runs to the first three batters he faced.
Plus, Korey Lee, who had struggled defensively his first few games, had a good day behind the plate, making several nice blocks and a throwing out a runner. But the defensive star was, uh, hmm, that’s odd (checks notes) — Andrew Vaughn.
But that’s not all!!!!
And you thought he was short.
The White Sox are now 0-for-September or 0-for-the-Chris-Getz-Era, depending on how you want to look at it, with the four losses coming against the Tigers and Royals. Did you think the White Sox might be good again by 2025? Would you like to change that to 2026? Or 2027?
The Sox get to play two more games in K.C. before a no-doubt welcome day off. Thank goodness for the marshmallow part of the schedule.
Who was the White Sox MVP?
This poll is closed
Are you kidding? No one. Literally, no one.
Who was the White Sox Cold Cat?
This poll is closed
Jesse Scholtens: 3 2⁄3 IP, 9 H, 5 R, -.244 WPA
The offense: getting 3-hit by the Royals
The bullpen: 4 1⁄3 IP, 7 H, 7 R, -..025 WPA
Six Pack of Stats
By Melissa Sage-Bollenbach
With one on and two out, Drew Waters landed himself a 1.04 LI when he singled on a liner to left, scoring Micahel Massey.
Sometimes, stats are funny. Tim Anderson felt the squeeze with a 0.59 pLI in this blowout, going 0-for-3 with two strikeouts. I’m not sure what real pressure there was to feel with no one on base, but I’ll just trust the stat geeks on this one.
Edward Olivares homered in the bottom of the first, giving the Royals an early 1-0 lead. This afternoon, he went 3-for-4 in the win with a 9.8% WPA.
Lefty Cole Ragans gets the blue ribbon today with his 23.1% WPA. He shut out the Good Guys, surrendering no runs on one hit, and struck out seven over six innings.
Elvis Andrus smoked a 109.1 mph ground out to third baseman Nick Loftin in the top of the ninth.
Waters hit a liner to first baseman Andrew Vaughn at 62.2 mph.
MJ Melendez’s single on a ground ball past shortstop Tim Anderson only had a .190 xBA.
Salvador Pérez’s sharp 106.8 mph line out to Anderson had a .710 xBA.
Olivares hit two bombs today and his second of the game took the cake, flying 429 feet away in center field.
Magic Number: 28
Twenty-eight wonderful days until this season can finally be put to rest.