White Sox

Teahen's errors prove costly, White Sox lose again

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Teahen's errors prove costly, White Sox lose again

Wednesday, Sept. 8, 2010
Updated 10:33 PM

By Brett Ballantini
CSNChicago.com

DETROIT John Dankss start on Wednesday after just three days rest was a move made neither of desperation nor condescension.

But after a series of 16-inch softball swings by hitters trying to tie the game with bases-empty grand slams and particularly hazy hot corner defense, Chicago fell 5-1 to a Detroit Tigers club playing for little more than pride. The White Soxs playoff hopes, after a 4-3 Minnesota Twins win vs. the Kansas City Royals, have been wheeled into the I.C.U., as the Chicago-9 fell 5 games back. Indeed, it has been nearly three months since the White Sox found themselves tucked so deeply away from the top spot in the A.L. Central.

This game, its over with, White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen said. They kicked out butt very quickthats the good thing about it. I hope we just forget about this game.

Things started out swimmingly for the White Sox. Danks cruised through the first three innings and initiated a nifty 1-6-3 double play in which he narrowly avoided choking on a splinter as the barrel of Casper Wellss bat frisbeed up the middle at him. Danks also drew Detroit into a double play in the third inning after surrendering the Bengals first hit, an infield tapper by Don Kelly.

And in the fourth, ageless second baseman Omar Vizquel drove a home run out to right, and Chicagos first hit of the game also gave it a 1-0 lead. The White Sox would put two more men on base in the inning before Mark Teahen struck out to end the threat.

While no one man is responsible for losing a game, Teahen tried his hardest, with two throwing errors and an 0-for-3 night at the plate. Teahens errors upped the White Sox total to 17 in the past 14 games.

The best thing this ballclubs been doing all year long is play defense, Guillen said. It shows all those baseball geniuses that say people dont need defense to win games that in any sport, if you dont play defense youre not going to win. I dont care how good you are offensively, sooner or later it will catch up to you.

Specifically, it was Teahens throwing error on an attempted 5-4-3 double play in the fourth that opened the gates for a four-run outburst from the Tigers. The big blows in the inning were a two-run single by Brandon Inge and a two-tally double by Alex Avila.

After they scored four runs, we were flat, Guillen admitted.

The third baseman alone has 10 errors in 52 games in 2010 while erring just 11 times in 107 contests a year ago, with the Royals.

Theres nobody on this team that feels worse than Mark about that, Danks said. Its part of the game. You cant fault him. He made a good play catching the second double-play ground ball in the first place. It took a funny hop on him. You go out there and try to pick him up, do the best you can to get out of that inning. I wasnt able to make a pitch when I needed to. Unfortunately, it turned into a big inning.

Yeah, I dont know. Obviously I made the first error and didnt get it out of my head, and then making another one that really hurt us, Teahen said. Its frustrating, especially the way I didnt play the best defense before I got hurt. I mean you can have a two-error game, but obviously I dont want to have one right now and in that situation where it really hurts us.

Danks made a valiant effort to keep the White Sox in the game, but his night would end after six innings, allowing eight hits, five runs (two earned) and three walks against four Ks.

I felt great, really good, Danks said. I didnt feel any different than I would on normal rest. I ran into some bad luck, didnt make pitches when I needed to and we lost the game.

Detroit starter Jeremy Bonderman handcuffed the Chisox with eight innings of three-hit, one-run ball. The righty struck out eight and walked just one.

Bonderman threw the ball pretty good, Guillen said. He was sinking the ball, threw good sliders behind in the count, stayed ahead in the count. We didnt get anything done today. We couldnt get it going.

While faulting his entire teams effort, Guillens fatigue with Teahens underwhelming play is looking to land him plenty of pine time as the season plays out. The skipper all but confirmed that in looking ahead to Thursdays finale, placing his faith in the miraculous recovery of injured second baseman Gordon Beckham, whose reinsertion into the lineup would push Vizquel back to third base.

I believe in defense, Guillen said. I dont know whos going to start tomorrow. It depends how Gordon feels; hopefully he feels better and well put Vizquel back at third base.

Early speculation has rookie Brent Morel getting his first major-league start at third base on Thursday, with Vizquel remaining at second and Beckham taking one more, much-needed, day of rest for his deeply-bruised hand.

Fatigued, and drowning his sorrows in computer solitaire for a second straight evening, Guillen nonetheless remains upbeat about his team, and its chances of a gilded run to the postseason in spite of the enormous odds facing them with just 23 games left.

Weve got to go out and continue to play, he said. We know were going to fight all the way to the endtheres no doubt. The way were playing this road trip, tomorrows a big game, win and have a great, great road trip. We have to get up tomorrow very early and come back here and play better.

The jefes charges arent yielding to doubt yet, either.

Yes, the clubhouse is upbeat, Danks said. Yes, we still feel like we have a chance. We are shooting ourselves in the foot a little bit. The last couple of nights we havent been playing very well. Look at the road trip as a whole, and weve been playing pretty well. If you had told us we could go 8-2 on this road trip, we would take it for sure.

Brett Ballantini is CSNChicago.coms White Sox Insider. Follow him @CSNChi_Beatnik on Twitter for up-to-the-minute Sox information.

After last season's personal tragedy, Tim Anderson ready to unleash real self

After last season's personal tragedy, Tim Anderson ready to unleash real self

GLENDALE, AZ --  There’s a different Tim Anderson at White Sox spring training this year.

You can see it on his face  You can hear it in his voice.

“I’m busting out of the shell. I’m talking more,” he said as he sat down for an interview with NBC Sports Chicago (in the video above).

It’s not the new Tim Anderson. It turns out, it’s the real one that’s been there all along.

“This is me. It’s always been me. I never knew how to express myself. I feel like I’m being a lot more open,” Anderson explained. “That’s what I want to give to fans. Let them know the real me. You’re cheering for me. Why not know me? I’m being open and kind of let fans into my life.”

The White Sox shortstop has learned a lot about life in the past year. It all started in May when the White Sox were in Baltimore to play the Orioles. Anderson received a phone call at 4 a.m. It was news from back home.

It was the worst phone call of his life.

His best friend Branden Moss had been murdered in the parking lot of a Tuscaloosa, Ala., bar after helping the victim of a fight.  

The two were like brothers. Anderson is the godfather to Moss’s young daughter. Moss was the godfather to Anderson’s 2-year-old daughter.

“It was heartbreaking,” Anderson said.

While Anderson grieved, playing baseball seemed like it would be a perfect escape for his pain. Only it wasn’t. Far from it.  Baseball might have made things even worse.

In fast-paced sports like football and hockey, players don’t have much time to think. It’s react, react, react. Whatever might be happening off the field feels like a million miles away.

Not in baseball.

The game moves at a much slower speed. There’s plenty of time for your mind to wander. Thoughts kept going back to Anderson’s lost friend, taken from him in an instant.

At 23, he didn’t have the tools to deal with the emotional pain and excel at baseball at the same time.

“The year was rough. I wasn’t having fun in between the lines. I was making the game harder than it was. I was thinking too much. I was feeling sorry for myself and the list can go on. When my friend died it definitely took a lot out of me. I had a dark moment,” Anderson said. “Some days I didn’t feel comfortable coming to the ballpark because I knew it was going to be a bad day.”

Making matters worse, there were many nights when Anderson didn’t sleep. Not a wink. Still, he dragged himself to the ballpark and somehow tried to play.

The results weren’t pretty. On June 22, Anderson already had 16 errors at shortstop, most in the majors. At the plate, he was hitting .256/.284/.374 with six home runs and 19 RBIs.

He knew he was better than that. He also knew something else: He needed help.

In July, Anderson started meeting with a therapist who was able to unlock the pent up thoughts and emotions that he was burying inside him.

The therapist would write down everything that Anderson was feeling on paper and then read it back to him.

“Just going in and talking and pouring everything out of you. It lets you hear what you’ve been going through,“ Anderson said. “When she did it, it was a lot. I took what she read to me, balled it up and threw it away. I got lighter. It was a brightening. Those counseling sessions definitely helped me.”

Soon, Anderson was back to being himself both on and off the field.

In the month of August, he had 8 doubles, 5 home runs and 16 RBI.

“Woof. I was hot,” he said after hearing those stats. “That’s Tim. That’s more Tim that we need to see.”

In September, he batted .327 with 3 home runs and 9 stolen bases.

“We need a lot of that this year. That’s the way I want to go. That’s the way I want to go about it. Get back to what got me here.”

There was still an issue with his plate discipline. He had 32 strikeouts and only 1 walk in September.

“We play a tough sport as it is. They’re going to come,” Anderson said about the walks. “I mean, when I walk more, what are you going to tell me? ‘Start swinging more?’ It’s one of those things. It’s a give and take. We’ll see what happens.”

In 2017, Anderson received a crash course in adversity. What did he learn from all that pain and misery?

“Tough times happen, but they don’t last forever.”

Now that he’s survived the personal storm from last season, he wants “another shot at it. I feel like last year went left. This is new season.”

So, what does he envision for himself in 2018?

“Having fun, smiling a lot, picking up my teammates, hugging on the coaches and players. A lot of love, more so than stats,” Anderson said. “I’m fired up. I’m excited. I feel like I’m ready to lead this pack. We got a great group of guys. We’ve got a chance to do something special.”

White Sox Talk Podcast: Michael Kopech tells all about his past, present and future

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USA TODAY

White Sox Talk Podcast: Michael Kopech tells all about his past, present and future

The White Sox top pitching prospect sits down with Chuck Garfien for a revealing interview at spring training. Kopech says he almost quit the game after he got into a fight with a Red Sox minor league teammate in 2016. He goes in-depth about his desire to be great, why meditating makes him a better pitcher, his failed PED test in 2015, comparisons to Justin Verlander, possibly becoming the future ace of the White Sox and much more.