White Sox

Miguel Gonzalez’s struggles continue as Orioles blow past White Sox

Miguel Gonzalez’s struggles continue as Orioles blow past White Sox

Miguel Gonzalez had an ERA of 2.00 four starts into 2017 and looked to be building on what was a strong debut season with the White Sox. But he’s struggled since that high-water mark, with his outing against his former club Wednesday night being no different. 

After a 90-minute rain delay and being spotted an early lead, Gonzalez allowed eight unanswered runs to send the White Sox to a 10-6 loss to the Baltimore Orioles in front of 20,008 at Guaranteed Rate Field. Gonzalez, in his last nine starts, has a 7.31 ERA and has allowed 71 hits, 18 walks and 11 home runs with 25 strikeouts in 51 2/3 innings. 

"I think it’s one of those things where he’s been trying to finish hitters snd he hasn’t been able to get it done," manager Rick Renteria said. "He’ll get ahead and then they seem to be able to battle him and fight him and in some instances they end up getting pitches that they can handle. So it’s something he’s still been working on.”

The White Sox handed Gonzalez an early 5-1 lead, with Tim Anderson delivering a two-out, two-run single in the first and Matt Davidson homering in second before some sloppy defensive play by the Orioles allowed two more runs to score. 

But Gonzalez gave back three runs in the fourth on a bases-loaded groundout — on which Todd Frazier errantly threw home instead of taking the out at first base — and Hyun Soo Kim’s two-out, two-run single. Disaster struck in the fifth, again with two outs, when Gonzalez allowed singles to Mark Trumbo and Trey Mancini before walking Jonathan Schoop. Welington Castillo followed by blasting a fastball off the center field batter’s eye for a grand slam, giving Baltimore the lead for good.

Gonzalez struggled to put hitters away in the fifth, getting Trumbo to two strikes before he singled and issuing a walk to Schoop on a 3-2 pitch. That’s been a recurring problem for him during this rough stretch. 

“I’m one pitch away, and it’s been like that the whole year, but I’m sure it’s going to change at some point,” Gonzalez said. “I’m going to put my head down and keep working hard, and good things are going to happen.”

Gonzalez posted a 3.73 ERA in 135 innings for the White Sox in 2016 (solidified by a 3.71 FIP), so he knows he can pitch successfully in Chicago. Getting back to that level, though, is easier said than done. 

“It’s not easy, but I’ve been there before and I’ve had success,” Gonzalez said. “Right now I’m struggling. I just have to keep working between my starts and hopefully everything will turn around.”

The Orioles tagged on two runs off White Sox right-hander Juan Minaya in the sixth to finish up their scoring. Minaya was optioned to Triple-A after the game, with a corresponding move to be announced before Thursday afternoon’s series finale. 

If there was a bright spot for the White Sox on a long Wednesday night, it was Avisail Garcia, who hit two soft singles in his first two-at-bats then ripped a double down the third base line in the seventh. Wednesday was Garcia’s 10th three-hit game of the season, tied with the Washington Nationals’ Ryan Zimmerman for the most in the majors this year.

White Sox Talk Podcast: Who will win the AL Central in 2020?

0629_guaranteed_rate_field_sox.jpg
USA TODAY

White Sox Talk Podcast: Who will win the AL Central in 2020?

With only 60 games to play in the 2020 MLB season, it seems like there will be a three-team race to the top of the AL Central. To discuss and debate, Chuck Garfien is joined by Anthony Castrovince and Do-Hyoung Park of MLB.com to discuss who will be crowned the division winner.

(4:30) - Is the AL Central a three-team race or will the Twins win it again?

(10:30) - Who will have the best hitting in the division?

(16:49) - Who has the best starting pitching?

Click to download the MyTeams App for the latest White Sox news and analysis.

(23:38) - Bullpen break down

(31:52) - Final rankings on who should win the AL Central

Listen here or below.

SUBSCRIBE TO THE WHITE SOX TALK PODCAST FOR FREE.

MLB The Show: White Sox take down Blue Jays behind Dallas Keuchel

MLB The Show: White Sox take down Blue Jays behind Dallas Keuchel

NBC Sports Chicago is simulating the 2020 White Sox season via MLB The Show during the postponement of play. The White Sox, stocked with young talent and veteran offseason acquisitions, were expected to take a big step forward in their rebuild this season. Follow along as we play out the first few months of the season.

Result: White Sox def. Blue Jays 7-1
Record: 51-36 this season, first in AL Central (3 games ahead of Twins)

W: Dallas Keuchel (5-5)
L: Hyun-Jin Ryu (9-4)

Game summary: The South Siders continued their three-game set vs the Blue Jays north of the border on Wednesday. And just like Canadian summers, their bats took a little longer than normal to warm up in this game.

Fortunately for the White Sox, they didn’t need a lot of runs early as Dallas Keuchel had his entire repertoire working. The veteran lefty, a frequent sore spot in the rotation this season, went eight innings while allowing just one run and striking out five batters. Sporting an ERA above 7 at times this year, Keuchel is now sitting at 5.90.

Click to download the MyTeams App for the latest White Sox news and analysis.

After just scoring just two runs through the first seven frames, the White Sox offense broke out in the eighth. Tim Anderson emerged from his power slump in a big way, hitting a three-run bomb to left. Then, Nomar Mazara also went deep, slugging his 17th homer of the season.

The White Sox winning streak is now at three games, the same total they lead the AL Central by as All-Star weekend approaches.

White Sox lineup:

Edwin Encarnacion: 0-4 (.311 BA)
Eloy Jimenez: 1-4, 2B (.251 BA)
Yoan Moncada: 1-5, HR (23), RBI, R (.278 BA)
Yasmani Grandal: 1-3, 2 BB, R (.309 BA)
Jose Abreu: 3-5, 2 2B, 2 R (.311 BA)
Tim Anderson: 1-5, HR (15), 3 RBI, R (.275 BA)
Luis Robert: 1-5, R (.256 BA)
Nick Madrigal: 1-3 (.283 BA)
Nomar Mazara: 2-4, HR (17), 2 RBI, R (.257 BA)

Scoring summary:

Top first

Yoan Moncada homered to left field. 1-0 CHW.

Top fourth

Nomar Mazara singled to left field, Luis Robert scored. 2-0 CHW.

Bottom fifth

Bo Bichette homered to left field. 2-1 CHW.

Top eighth

Tim Anderson homered to left field, Yasmani Grandal and Jose Abreu scored. 5-1 CHW.
Mazara homered to right field. 6-1 CHW.

Top ninth

Anderson reached on throwing error, Abreu scored. 7-1 CHW.

Notable performance: Mazara is the human embodiment of the saying “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” Despite being in the nine-hole, Mazara has hit 16 homers and is ninh in the AL with 63 RBIs. There's no reason to move him elsewhere in the lineup.

Next game: Thursday, July 2 - Game 88: White Sox at Blue Jays (Dylan Cease, 4-4, 5.40 ERA vs Ryan Borucki, 6-4, 5.11 ERA)

SUBSCRIBE TO THE WHITE SOX TALK PODCAST FOR FREE.