White Sox

Floyd flirts with no-hitter, falls to Royals


Floyd flirts with no-hitter, falls to Royals

Sunday, Sept. 25, 2011Posted: 3:42 p.m. Updated: 4:48 p.m.

By BrettBallantini
CSNChicago.com White SoxInsiderFollow@CSNChi_Beatnik
CHICAGO This is the way Alex Rios season has gone: Even when he saves a no-hitter with a daredevil catch in center, one of the primary Chicago White Sox whipping boys manages to doom the no-no at the same time.

Hows that? Well, it started when Rios ended the fourth inning with a terrific, running catch on a Billy Butler flyball deep to center. He made the catch a step from the wall but smashed full-force into a padded beam, knocking him to the ground and leaving his face and head bruised.

Rios, who left the game for precautionary measures at the inning break, passed his concussion tests but will not play on Monday, according to manager Ozzie Guillen.

But how was Rios in turn responsible for the no-hitter being lost in the top of the sixth? Well, its merely an indirect indictment, in that by leaving the game he forced Alejandro De Aza over to center field and Dayan Viciedo into the game in right. And that first hit off Floyd, by Lorenzo Cain, naturally blooped out to right, where the slower-footed Viciedo could not corral it for an out.

Of course, Floyd quickly ran into bigger trouble in the sixth and just losing his no-no, as Chris Getz immediately followed with a single to center, and both runners scored on a double by the diminutive Jarrod Dyson. It would turn out to be all the Kansas City Royals would need in a 2-1 win, as Luis Mendoza hurled a gem over 7 23 innings, handcuffing the Chisox offense to five hits and escaping with just one earned run, let in by reliever Greg Holland.

Aside from the RBI double surrendered to Paul Konerko on a first-pitch fastball, Holland struck out all four batters he faced to earn his fourth save. Konerko had been relishing a rematch with Mendoza, who left a nasty knot on the first basemans elbow with a HBP in the sixth and opted to stay in the game.

We couldnt get anything done all day, Guillen said, in his latest incarnation of his thats White Sox baseball talk. We couldnt come through with a two-out RBI.

Floyd had another strong game, a 76 game score to earn his sixth game at 70 or better, by far the best on the White Sox. Over eight innings, he struck out 10 against just two walks and three hits.

Floyd, who pitched absolutely well according to Guillen, recognized early on he had a lot of snap to his curveball but admitted that all of his pitches were working well.

In losing their 11th of 18 games vs. the Royals and falling to 77-82, Guillen was forced today to accept the fact that the White Sox would finish with a losing record in 2011.

I think were a losing team when I get the x, Guillen said, referring to playoff elimination. Im not here for stats. Once I see the x, Im done.

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

Daily White Sox prospects update: Zack Collins hits a pair of homers


Daily White Sox prospects update: Zack Collins hits a pair of homers

Here's your daily update on what the White Sox highly touted prospects are doing in the minor leagues.

Double-A Birmingham

Zack Collins hit two home runs as part of a three-hit day. He drove in two runs, scored two runs and walked once in a 10-4 loss. Collins now has seven homers on the campaign with an ungodly .421 on-base percentage. He's batting .326 over his last 25 games. Eloy Jimenez had two hits and a walk, and Jordan Guerrero gave up four runs and walked five in four innings.

Class A Winston-Salem

The Dash lost both games of a doubleheader, 10-5 and 7-0. Luis Alexander Basabe, Alex Call and Gavin Sheets each picked up two hits on the day.

Triple-A Charlotte

Charlie Tilson had a hit and scored a run in a 2-1 loss.

Class A Kannapolis

Luis Gonzalez had a hit in a 2-1 win.

Reynaldo Lopez is changing his place in the White Sox rebuild: 'When I'm on the mound, I'm the best and I don't care about the rest'


Reynaldo Lopez is changing his place in the White Sox rebuild: 'When I'm on the mound, I'm the best and I don't care about the rest'

Rebuilds are full of surprises.

Fans can pencil in any names they want into their 2020 lineups, but there’s almost no one who’s going to have a 100-percent success rate when it comes to predicting exactly what the next contending White Sox team will look like.

Reynaldo Lopez carried plenty of hype when he was acquired from the Washington Nationals in the Adam Eaton deal prior following the 2016 season. He had a high prospect ranking before he was called up last summer. He hasn’t materialized out of nowhere.

But with names like Lucas Giolito, Michael Kopech, Alec Hansen, Carlos Rodon and others to compete with for one of those coveted rotation spots of the future, was anyone going to use the term “ace” to describe Lopez?

Well, in this rebuilding season’s most pleasant surprise for the White Sox and their fans, that’s exactly what Lopez has been. He’s been hands down the team’s best starting pitcher, and he’s making the case that he shouldn’t be considered an ancillary piece in this rebuilding process but a featured one.

He might not be getting the attention that others are. But he’s doing the most with his opportunity of being at the big league level right now. In the end, as long as you’re getting batters out, who cares how much attention you get?

“It’s not about what people say or what they are talking about,” Lopez said through a translator. “It’s about the confidence I have in myself, and I have plenty of confidence in myself. For me, I’m the best. I’m not saying the other guys are not. I’m just saying that’s the confidence I have. When I’m on the mound, I’m the best and I don’t care about the rest.”

Sunday marked the best start of Lopez’s young career, so said the pitcher himself. He was terrific in shutting down the visiting Texas Rangers, holding them to just two hits over eight scoreless innings.

It was one heck of a bounce-back performance considering what happened last time out, when he was roughed up for six runs in just two innings against the Pittsburgh Pirates.

The difference? His attitude, his focus, his intensity, his conviction.

“I just changed my attitude in the game,” Lopez said. “I was more positive today than I was in my last outing and that was one of my biggest differences.”

“I do think he came out a little bit more focused, to be honest,” manager Rick Renteria said. “The intensity level was a little higher today. I think he threw the first couple pitches 97, 98 miles an hour, where his last outing they were at 93, 94. There wasn’t a whole lot of commitment or conviction to his pitches (against the Pirates). I think, as we talked after the last outing, (pitching coach Don Cooper) spoke to him a little about making sure he brought that intensity that he has the ability to do, to bring it from Pitch 1 and he did today.”

Renteria liked it all, and he saw something different in his pitcher when he went out to talk to him with two outs in the eighth. Lopez issued a two-out walk, and Renteria considered lifting Lopez from the game.

Lopez made sure his manager wouldn’t pull the plug on this outing.

“I hid the baseball in my glove because I didn’t want to leave the game,” Lopez said. “I asked me, ‘How are you? Are you good?’ And I told him, ‘Yes, I’m good.’ Then he asked me again, ‘Do you think you are able to get him out?’ And I said yes, ‘This is my game, and I’m going to finish it.’”

What did Lopez do with his extra life? He finished it all right, blowing Shin-Soo Choo away with a 96-mile-an-hour fastball. Then he showed as much emotion as he’s ever shown on a major league field. He earned that celebration.

“When you see your manager come out and you’ve already gone through most of your game in terms of what you might think you have in number of pitches available to you, and you reiterate that you want to finish a particular batter because you want to get out of that inning, and you do it, it's an accomplishment,” Renteria said. “It's a big accomplishment. For him, pretty good hitter. He battled him and he was able to get out of that inning and complete a very, very strong eight-inning outing.”

It’s the kind of exclamation point on a dominant afternoon that could stir some big plans in White Sox fans always dreaming of the future. What Lopez has done this season has been a strong case for a spot in that future rotation and a spot at the front of it, at that. Following Sunday’s gem, Lopez owns a 2.98 ERA with at least six strikeouts in four of his nine starts.

There’s a lot of development and a lot of time left before the White Sox contention window opens. But Lopez pitching like this offers a glimpse into the crystal ball, a look at what could be for an organization that’s acquired so much talent over the last two years.

You might not have seen it coming like this, but the future arriving in the form of Lopez is a sign that brighter days are ahead on the South Side.