White Sox

Tramp the dirt down: Tigers rout Soxagain

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Tramp the dirt down: Tigers rout Soxagain

Monday, Sept. 12, 2011
Posted: 10:20 p.m. Updated: 11:50 p.m.

By BrettBallantini
CSNChicago.com White SoxInsiderFollow @CSNChi_Beatnik
Box score

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If it were a prizefight, this was Mike Tyson demolishing Michael Spinks, or George Foreman devouring Jos Roman. Of course, if it were a fight, White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen could have thrown in the towel and preserved his troops for another day.

But this was not a prizefight, and thus the Detroit Tigers showed Chicago little mercy in a 14-4 pasting that opened the final series of the season between the two teams.

Although it is tempting to merely cut-and-paste the September 4 gamerthe 18-2 massacre wherein the Detroit Tigers dropped the Chicago White Sox six feet under and tramped the dirt downthis game had some differences. It was played in Chicago, before a semi-partisan crowd, and not Detroit. It wasnt on national TV. And the White Sox scored four runs, while holding the Tigers to 14.

But otherwise, wow, the evisceration from a week earlier bore eerie resemblance to that of this Mondays massacre: poor pitching, languid play and embarrassment all around.

John Danks got Detroits hit parade off to a swift start, giving up eight runs (seven earned) on 11 hits, some of them of the seeing-eye variety, but none of them coming cheap.

Obviously, I didnt throw the ball very well; thats apparent, Danks said. I dont know if theres a hotter team out there, either. Its embarrassing, but at the same time, you have to realize how good theyve been playing. When I was ahead in the count, I was letting them off the hook. Id fall behind and try to get back in the count, and they hit the ball hard. It happens. Its a good team going good, and even the balls they mis-hit were falling in. Its part of the game, I guess.

Hes making very bad pitches, but those guys right now, they had like seven ground ball base hits, Guillen said. Right now, they are swinging the bat very well and its a combination of both Dankss pitching and Detroits hitting. John has had a tough time the last couple of times with them, but so do a lot of people. Right now, those guys are on fire.

Guillen has done his homework, as everyone in the White Sox rotation has struggled vs. the Bengals; during Detroits current, 10-game win streak, Chicago has accorded them eight, nine, 18 and 14 runs.

Detroit cranked out 21 hits and scored in five of nine innings, often with crooked numbers, in putting together an overall 40-6 run that stretched over the past 22 innings between the two clubs. Ryan Raburn, Delmon Young and Brandon Inge accounted for 10 of Motowns 21 hits and were retired just three times collectively. Raburns four hits marked the third time in his career hes achieved the milestoneall against the White Sox.

Chicago actually held a 1-0 lead after one, with Dayan Viciedo driving home Juan Pierre with a groundout off of Rick Porcello, who eluded all prior Pale Hose bugaboos with a tidy six-hit, three run effort over 6 23 innings. But back-to-back blasts from Jhonny Peralta (two runs) and Raburn on successive pitches in the second gave Detroit a 3-1 lead it would not relinquish. As the game totaled up in uneven fashion, it was more of the same for both the White Sox offense (0-for-7 with RISP) and Detroits (8-for-18).

Nearly the only other highlight was a pair of late homers by Brent Morel, one with two outs in the seventh, the second with one out in the ninth. Both were massive blasts to straightaway center, upping his total to seven homers on the year and five in his past 13 games.

Hes swung the bat pretty good the last 15 games, Guillen said. Its nice to see when a kid goes out there and performs that way and puts himself in a nice position to hopefully finish strong and have a good year.

Its just more confidence and trusting my swing a little bit, said the reticent third baseman. Im just developing an approach. Ive been working more, but not really trying to do anything differentjust trying to let it happen.

While a forgone conclusion in the eyes of most, Guillen was asked whether he felt his team had any fight left in them. The manager, frank as always (he approached the postgame podium with surprise, saying Wow, you really, really want to talk to me. Thank you. Wow), didnt part the clouds with his response.

You have to ask my players, he said. After you lose a game like that, if I say yes, we do, I might be lying. You lose a game like this and get beat up again against Detroit, Im not going to say, yeah, we got fire, because I dont see it We look at each other like, Whats going on here, what happened? But they beat us and Im not going to take any credit away from them.

Danks, for one, isnt going to let his final starts go down without a fight.

I have pride. Im competitive. I didnt have fun today. I didnt have fun at all. Im as frustrated as Ive ever been, he said. I want to finish strong and have a good taste in my mouth heading into the offseason. At the rate Im going over my past three starts, thats not looking good.

Were going to finish on a strong notewe havent given up. Obviously our playoffs hopes are pretty dim. Were going to finish on a strong note and get rolling into next year. Games like this arent fun. They dont sit well with us. Well try to win every game. We signed up to play 162 and more, were going to play 162 and try to win every game we can.

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

Reynaldo Lopez continues hot start to second half, helps snap White Sox losing streak

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USA TODAY

Reynaldo Lopez continues hot start to second half, helps snap White Sox losing streak

After a rough outing against the Detroit Tigers on July 4 — his last before the All-Star break — White Sox starting pitcher Reynaldo Lopez vowed to be a different pitcher going forward.

“At this point, after a really bad first half, there's not much I can say about that. Starting today, you're going to see a different pitcher going forward for the second half of the season,” Lopez said after his July 4 start through team interpreter Billy Russo. “What is done is done. There's nothing else that I can do to change what is done.

“I can do different things to get better and to be a better pitcher for the year and that's what I'm going to do.”

Two outings later, and Lopez is nearing the point where he can say “I told you so.”

Lopez has come out of the break firing on all cylinders after struggling to a 4-8 record and MLB-worst 6.34 ERA before the Midsummer Classic. Friday, he tossed seven innings of two-run ball, allowing just six hits and one walk compared to eight strikeouts. This follows his brilliant outing against the Athletics on Sunday in which he pitched six innings, allowing just three hits and one run — albeit unearned — with two walks and seven strikeouts.

Lopez exited Sunday’s game in line for a win before the White Sox bullpen slipped up. The offense allowed no such opportunity on Friday, tallying 16 hits en route to a 9-2 drubbing of the Tampa Bay Rays. It’s Lopez’s first win since June 9 against the Kansas City Royals and the White Sox first win after the break, snapping a seven-game skid.

Lopez has received a fair share of criticism this season for his struggles, but his recent success should not come as much of a surprise considering how he fared in 2018. The 25-year-old posted a 3.91 ERA in 32 starts, striking out 151 batters in 188 2/3 innings.

Lopez’s strikeout rate in 2019 is up compared to 2018 (8.19 K/9 in 2019 vs. 7.20 in 2018) and his walk rate is down (3.32 BB/9 in 2019 vs. 3.58 in 2018). The major difference is that opponents are hitting .284 against him this season compared to .234 in 2018, while also holding a .319 BABIP, up from .260 last season.

It may just be two starts, but Lopez is backing up his vow to pitch better. Between Lucas Giolito, Dylan Cease and the returns of Michael Kopech and Carlos Rodón from Tommy John surgery in 2020, the White Sox future starting rotation is in good hands. Getting Lopez back to pitching how he did in 2018 will only take that group to the next level.

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White Sox Talk Podcast: Interview with Hall of Famer Harold Baines

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NBC Sports Chicago

White Sox Talk Podcast: Interview with Hall of Famer Harold Baines

Chuck Garfien sits down with new Hall of Famer Harold Baines.

First, Chuck, Ryan McGuffey and Chris Kamka share their memories of watching Baines play with the White Sox (1:40). Then, Baines explains why he's always been so soft-spoken (8:45), how he was able to play 22 seasons in the majors (13:00), why he's never spoken to GM Larry Himes for trading him to Texas (15:30), the apology he received from President George W. Bush (16:30), what he thinks about the critics who don't think he should be in the Hall of Fame (18:25), a replay of Baines emotional interview with Chuck about his dad (20:50) and more.

Listen to the full episode in the embedded player below: