White Sox

White Sox provide little support for Quintana in loss to Blue Jays

quintana-sox-insider-0707.png

White Sox provide little support for Quintana in loss to Blue Jays

Know how the White Sox have had trouble scoring runs this season?

It happened again on Tuesday night.

The White Sox offense, rebuilt with $74.5 million worth of modifications in the offseason, sputtered to the halfway point of the season with a 2-1 loss to the Toronto Blue Jays in front of 17,028 at U.S. Cellular Field.

Hours after another call to action, the White Sox tossed an additional lackluster offensive performance onto the pile against Felix Doubront and three relievers. The White Sox finished the first half with a 37-44 record.

Despite eight great innings, Jose Quintana (4-8) received another hard-luck loss as the White Sox were held to one run or fewer for the 21st time. Josh Donaldson’s fourth-inning solo homer -- his sixth in five games against the White Sox in 2015 -- was the difference.

“It’s just too hard for these guys to try to win 2-1,” White Sox manager Robin Ventura said. “There’s no room for error. It’s not giving them a big lead and they sit there and kind of play with it.

[SHOP: Buy a White Sox All-Star Game hat]

“There’s no room. You lose tonight because Donaldson hits a home run.”

The White Sox had few chances but they had the tying run at third base with one out in the ninth inning and the infield drawn in. But after his wild pitch allowed Alexei Ramirez to move to third, Toronto reliever Roberto Osuna composed himself and escaped with his fourth save. First he induced a foul out to shallow left off J.B. Shuck’s bat before Conor Gillaspie fouled out to end the contest. The White Sox have scored four runs or fewer in a franchise-record 24 straight home games. They also have scored three runs or fewer 45 times this season, winning just 10 of those contests. The White Sox, who are averaging 3.41 runs per game, are 27-9 when they score at least four runs. They’re on pace to score 552 runs in 2015.

They scored their lone run Tuesday on a two-out, game-tying RBI single by Carlos Sanchez in the second inning.

“Everybody’s still trying to put it together,” catcher Tyler Flowers said. “We haven’t had that moment where a number of us are hot, so we’re still kind of waiting on that to happen and we’ve got to find ways to scratch and claw through. Tonight, we should have done a little bit better. With that performance, it’s a great job by Q to give us a chance and hold that offense down. We’ve just got to find a way.”

Though they continue to stress patience, time is clearly running out for the White Sox, who entered Tuesday 5 1/ 2 games out in the wild-card race. The bigger issues are that nine teams sit in front of them in that wild-card chase and the July 31 nonwaiver trade deadline is a little over three weeks away. While the White Sox don’t intend upon a massive overhaul, key chips could be peddled away soon if and -- more likely -- when they decide to become sellers.

[MORE: Buehrle thought atmosphere at U.S. Cellular Field was 'outstanding']

The same old storyline on offense produced a replica outing for Quintana, who continued an excellent run by White Sox pitchers with a season-high eight innings pitched.

There’s not much more Quintana could do to improve his chances for victory. In his last eight outings, the left-hander has a 2.70 ERA in 53 1/3 innings. But the White Sox record is only 4-4 as they’ve scored 13 runs for Quintana while he’s been on the mound. They’ve produced 31 runs in Quintana’s 107 1/3 innings this season.

Just as Chris Sale did on Monday, Quintana kept a lethal Blue Jayslineup under wraps. Though Toronto entered the game with the most potent offense in the majors, they tallied just two runs, the latter coming on Donaldson’s homer. Donaldson is 10-for-17 against White Sox pitching this season.

The Blue Jays jumped ahead 1-0 in the first inning when Reyes singled, stole second, advanced to third on a grounder and scored on Jose Bautista’s RBI groundout.

But Quintana retired nine in a row after Reyes’ leadoff hit until Donaldson’s homer and later retired 10 more consecutively. He struck out five in a row in between the fourth and fifth innings and finished with eight. Quintana allowed two earned runs and four hits.

“I’ll try next time to not give up any runs,” Quintana said. “I’ll try again to keep my games as close as I can.

“I can never (get frustrated with the offense) because it’s a long season. I try to do what is best for me every five days. I try to get a win for us every time/ just keep going. It’s the middle of the season.”

Sox Drawer Q&A: Joe Girardi, Enoy Jimenez and Chris Sale's 'infected' belly button

1022_joe_girardi_again.jpg
USA TODAY

Sox Drawer Q&A: Joe Girardi, Enoy Jimenez and Chris Sale's 'infected' belly button

We made it above 60 degrees in Chicago today: A cause for celebration and another edition of the Sox Drawer. Questions from White Sox fans range from Joe Girardi to Enoy Jimenez (yes, Enoy) to Chris Sale’s “infected” belly button. Here we go.

Q: Jon Heyman tweeted out earlier that Joe Girardi pulled out of the Reds managerial search because he wants to wait a year for the Chicago job. Do you think he’s talking about the Sox? — @piratedwight

CG: I don’t know if the report is true or not, but what I do know is that Girardi grew up a Cubs fan and he later played for the Cubs. Put those two together and I’d assume he would love to manage them in the future. Something to consider: The main reason Yankees general manager Brian Cashman gave for firing Girardi in 2017 was that he felt he had trouble communicating and connecting with the young players. For a young, rebuilding team like the White Sox, that might be a red flag. Granted, that’s the Yankees' side of the story. Personally, I don’t think he’s interested in managing the White Sox.

Q: Who do you want the Sox to draft with the 3rd pick? Do some research. — @Frankie_OConnor

CG: If you look at most mock drafts right now, you’ll see high school shortstop Bobby Witt Jr. going first, followed by Oregon State catcher Adley Rutschman (Nick Madrigal’s teammate) and Baylor catcher Shea Langeliers. Rutschman’s stock went way up because of his play in the College World Series, where he was named the Most Outstanding Player. Langeliers won a Gold Glove in 2018, named the best defensive catcher in Division I. He nailed 70 percent of would-be base stealers. Umm, I’ll take that.

The White Sox took Zack Collins with the 10th overall pick in 2016. White Sox scouting director Nick Hostelter always says “take the best player available.” Would they draft another catcher with their top pick again? Possibly.

You know what, why don’t we hear from Hostetler himself? I asked him to describe the talent level at the top of next year’s draft.

“Overall the ‘19 draft has a little bit of everything up top,” Hostetler said. “There are some interesting high school bats and arms, as well as some college bats and a few college arms that are intriguing. I’m not sure there’s a clear top five at this point, but as we’ve seen in past years, the guys sitting at the top of all the lists and mock drafts today usually change come the first Monday in June.”

In other words, let’s talk again in June. The best part about this? The White Sox will be in position to grab a very talented player for their future.

Q: After the most recent international signing of Eloy Jimenez’s brother, Enoy, do you think he could get close to the level of Eloy? Eloy wasn’t a known prospect until a few years ago, keep in mind. — @Dehhmac_

CG: In case you missed it, the White Sox signed Eloy’s 17-year-old brother to a baseball contract Sunday. Eloy posted a photo of him and his smiling brother wearing a White Sox hat and jersey.


By the way, if you do a Google search for “Enoy Jimenez,” Google will ask: “Did you mean Eloy Jimenez?” Even Google can’t believe it.

We don’t know too much about little Enoy. I say little because he’s tiny compared to his big brother. See the video we found on YouTube which was posted a couple of weeks ago. Enoy is wearing a White Sox retro tank top and a Charlotte Knights hat. If anything, he’ll fit right in at SoxFest. Seriously, he has some great baseball DNA, so he’s got that going for him. He’s an infielder. That’s about all we know. As MLB Trade Rumors put it, “scouting information on the younger Jimenez brother is virtually non-existent.”


Q: We know that Rick Hahn plays things close to the vest. In your opinion, do the White Sox view Matt Davidson as a viable two-way option? Personally, I'd like to see how he does in close games. — @emm528

CG: I know Davidson is quite serious about it. I’m not sure about the White Sox side of things. When I asked Don Cooper during the season about the possibility of Davidson having a more permanent role in the bullpen, he seemed skeptical about the idea. That said, if Davidson comes to spring training and impresses the coaching staff, they might be open to it. Davidson told me in September that he needs to train his body during the offseason so he could handle the workload as a pitcher. He just basically winged it in emergency duty last season. At one point after one of his appearances, he needed around two weeks for his body to get back to normal. It’ll be interesting to see if he can pull it off.

Q: You got to be by the dugout for most home games this year. What’s something that goes on in the dugout during a game that fans at home wouldn’t know? — @PeteCha56613119

CG: Davidson likes to throw gum at me.

Q: Chris Sale. Discuss. — @sccerlaw​​​​​​​

CG: If you’re asking about Sale getting an infection from a belly-button ring, he was joking. Sale likes to have fun with the media. Remember in 2014, when he tried to work in a specific word during his postgame media scrums? He said things like juxtapose, acquiesce, capitulated, ruminate, amalgamation. Waiting to hear what his next Harvard vocabulary word was one of the highlights of a rough fourth-place season. Sale did miss his start in Game 5 of the ALCS because of an unspecified stomach illness. Keep in mind, he’s probably taking medication for an inflamed shoulder. But he says he’s 100-percent ready now for Game 1 of the World Series.

Q: If the White Sox win the World Series next year will you get a belly button ring? — @vlamas05​​​​​​​

CG: Sure.

Q: Why don't the White Sox have a museum in the park? About 1/3 of the league does and most of those teams have half the history the Sox do. — @Gnome89​​​​​​​

CG: Good question. For this one, I went right to the source and asked Brooks Boyer, White Sox senior vice president of sales and marketing.

“We used to have a small museum that fans could walk through which was attached to our team store," Boyer said. "Years ago, we converted that space as demand for a wider selection of retail products grew. We do have a museum-like historical display in the Magellan Scout Seats and have put many of the significant moments in our history on the columns leading to the sections on the 100 level. This past season we had a Negro League Museum traveling display in the Chicago Sports Depot.

"We continue to look for ways to display our history, and the Depot may very well be the best place, but, at this point, there are no plans for a permanent museum location.”

Q: Who do you see the White Sox going after in free agency this year? — @Grank2410​​​​​​​

CG: I wrote about my top five free agents last week. I don’t know for sure who the White Sox will sign, but I’d like to see them add a veteran hitter or two who have playoff experience, who know what it takes to win and can impart that on the young hitters.

Q: When will the Sox change their uniforms? — @ckottlarock​​​​​​​

CG: Personally, I’d wear the 1983 throwbacks for every game, home and away. But that’s just me.

Q: Can we please not get Machado? Can we get Nolan Arenado instead? — @drobaseball555​​​​​​​

CG: Rick Hahn, if you’re reading this, @drobaseball555 wants Arenado. Got it?

Thanks everyone for all of your questions. We’ll do it again next week.

White Sox sign Enoy Jimenez, the 17-year-old brother of Eloy Jimenez

White Sox sign Enoy Jimenez, the 17-year-old brother of Eloy Jimenez

One Jimenez just isn't enough for the White Sox.

The White Sox signed the younger brother of top prospect Eloy Jimenez this weekend. Enoy Jimenez is a 17-year-old infielder, and the 21-year-old outfielder ranked as the No. 3 prospect in baseball was on hand for his brother's big moment.

Eloy figures to hit the big leagues early next season, though it will likely be a while longer before his teenage brother could do the same. Still, they're likely hoping for the chance to play together one day.

According to this pretty exhaustive list from MLB.com, four sets of brothers have played together on the White Sox: Homer and Ted Blankenship in the 1920s, Dick and Hank Allen in the 1970s, Roberto and Sandy Alomar in 2003 and 2004 and John and Jordan Danks in 2012.

Should we be getting ready for the fifth pair?

Update: Our Chuck Garfien found this video of Enoy taking some cuts with his big brother — all decked out in White Sox gear, too.