MINNEAPOLIS — Hector Noesi doesn’t seem satisfied that he hasn’t been allowed to clean up his own messes.
Making just his third start of the season and first since April 21, the pitcher made note of the fact that he was removed from a tied game in the fifth inning Saturday despite a low pitch count. If he had his way, Noesi would have had the opportunity to pitch out of a runners-on-the-corners, one-out jam. Carlos Rodon entered and walked Joe Mauer ahead of Trevor Plouffe’s RBI single and a sac fly by Kurt Suzuki as the White Sox fell to the Minnesota Twins, 5-3.
“I think I just throw just 73 pitches,” Noesi said. “That’s not a lot. I thought I was going to stay there, but I don’t make the decisions.”
Noesi has been in a tough spot early this season.
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He pitched poorly and lost the April 10 home opener and with two off days in a span of four, the White Sox skipped his turn in the second week of the season. Noesi started on April 21 but left with a pair of runners on in the fifth inning in lieu of Rodon, who struggled in his debut. Noesi lost that game as well.
Noesi was in line to pitch last Sunday, but that outing was pushed to Monday because of a Saturday rainout. Then came the cancellation of Monday’s game in Baltimore, at which point the White Sox reorganized the rotation again, pushing Noesi to Saturday in Minneapolis.
“It feels uncomfortable sometimes because you can’t keep the rhythm,” Noesi said. “Sometimes you want to push too hard to try to get the team to win games. It’s not always easy.”
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The White Sox knew a lack of rhythm might hurt Noesi, who issued a pair of walks and threw strikes on only 43 of 73 pitches. Noesi missed with a curveball to Plouffe in the second inning and a slider to Torii Hunter in the third, both going for home runs.
Noesi — who allowed five earned runs and five hits with two walks in 4 1/3 innings — pitched out of trouble in the fourth inning after he allowed the first two batters to reach. But he didn’t get the chance in the fifth after giving up a leadoff double to Danny Santana and a one-out single to Hunter. Rodon took over and Mauer held off on a pair of sliders to draw a walk ahead of Plouffe’s single and Suzuki’s sac fly.
“The homers, you have to be able to keep them in the yard and give them a chance,” White Sox manager Robin Ventura said. “They had some big homers there and got in some trouble. We were looking to get out of it with Carlos, and they put it in play. That’s the way it’s going right now.”