Leury Garcia

Charlie Tilson gets another chance with White Sox after Leury Garcia hits the DL


Charlie Tilson gets another chance with White Sox after Leury Garcia hits the DL

Charlie Tilson is finally back in the major leagues. And this time, he’s hoping he can stick around for more than one game.

Tilson, currently ranked as the White Sox No. 15 prospect, was brought up from Triple-A Charlotte on Thursday, joining the active roster after the team placed Leury Garcia on the 10-day disabled list with a left knee sprain.

Tilson, a Wilmette native and New Trier High School product, came over to the White Sox from the St. Louis Cardinals in a midseason trade in 2016 and got a hit in his first big league at-bat. But in the same game, he suffered a season-ending hamstring injury while trying to make a diving catch in the outfield. The following spring, he suffered another serious injury, a stress fracture in his foot, and was forced to sit out the entire season.

He missed out on an Opening Day roster spot this year when Adam Engel outperformed him during spring training. But the White Sox hope Tilson will be able to provide some production in an outfield that has struggled in that department this season. Engel, even after a four-hit night on Wednesday, is batting just .212. Trayce Thompson is hitting well under .200. And Avisail Garcia and Nicky Delmonico are dealing with their own significant injuries as Leury Garcia joins them on the DL.

Tilson batted .248 in 39 games at Charlotte this season prior to Thursday’s call-up. He had three hits in Wednesday night’s loss.

Benched for not hustling: Just one of the ways Rick Renteria is trying to build the White Sox identity


Benched for not hustling: Just one of the ways Rick Renteria is trying to build the White Sox identity

Someone has to teach Ricky’s boys not to quit. That someone is Ricky himself.

The rebuilding White Sox are trying to establish an organizational identity, and that has taken the form of “Ricky’s boys don’t quit,” a four-word, bumper-sticker friendly way of summarizing the manager’s desire for his players to play hard, from the start of the game to the end of it. The players wear shirts with the No. 27 on the back, symbolizing playing hard for all 27 outs of a game.

But on rare occasions, they don’t do that, and that’s when Renteria needs to step in.

He did it Wednesday, when the White Sox appeared to be on their way to a win against the Pittsburgh Pirates — before Nate Jones gave up four runs in the ninth inning and the South Siders dropped their fifth straight game. Leury Garcia attempted to bunt for a hit. It didn’t work, the ball going right to the first baseman. Garcia was easily out before much of a play developed. But his lack of a sprint down the first-base line earned the frustration of his manager, and Garcia was yanked from the game.

“I didn’t think I had a chance to make it, but that’s the way he wants me to play so I can’t say anything,” Garcia said Friday before the start of the Crosstown series with the Cubs. “He wants everybody to play hard, give a good effort. I didn’t do it, so he took me out. You learn every day. It’s not going to happen anymore.”

The White Sox could’ve used Garcia’s versatility later in the game, as a two-run double bounced in front of Daniel Palka in that disastrous ninth. A defensive improvement could've been made, with Palka being swapped out for Trayce Thompson to give Renteria a better defensive outfield.

No matter. Renteria has already shown that certain aspects of development will be of greater value to the White Sox young players than wins in this rebuilding season. Perhaps building a cultural identity falls into the same category.

“At the end of the day, what we’re doing, it’s about trying to create the identity that we wish to have as far as who we are as an organization,” Renteria said. “We will get to that point, I think we’re nearing that point where conversations will be had where I don’t have to remove someone from the ballgame, but the conversation has to be had during that ballgame to make sure someone understands that that’s not something that is acceptable.

“Once you allow that line to be crossed and it starts spreading a little deeper and everybody feels that it’s OK. It’s about changing the mindset. Ultimately, you want your veteran players to be able to take that mantle and to be able to talk to a player and let them know what’s going on.”

It won’t go down as some great controversy. Garcia was back in the lineup Friday, batting second and starting in center field. But it might end up having a significance in the long term, the most important term to this rebuilding organization. If Renteria and the White Sox go player by player, from top to bottom, establishing the identity they want to establish, then everyone will be on the same page — and playing the way the team wants them to play — when the contention window opens.

“It’s kind of what you’re trying to develop,” Renteria said. “I don’t think it’s just established here at the major league level, I think it’s established as the guys are going through the minor league system, as well. It becomes an organizational mindset as to how you deal with it.

“You don’t need to be a 12-year vet to impart to a teammate, ‘Hey, you’ve got to do a little better.’ You can still be a young man and know that you’re in an organization that wants to play the game a certain way and you can pull your teammate aside and have that conversation with him, which I appreciate because there’s so many things going on. But as the manager, those are the things that I still have to make sure I take care of.

“Right, wrong or indifferent, we’re trying to establish a certain way to go about doing our business. I know that I don’t like it when I see guys not coming out the box hustling.”

Three days off did not help, as White Sox not named Reynaldo Lopez had a hideous night in Oakland

Three days off did not help, as White Sox not named Reynaldo Lopez had a hideous night in Oakland

Despite three straight days without baseball, the White Sox did not come back from their long weekend looking their freshest.

It was a real ugly night in Oakland as the White Sox dropped the series opener with the A's by an 8-1 score. With a non-existent offense and a mistake-prone defense, anyone not named Reynaldo Lopez had a bad all-around evening at the Coliseum.

Lopez was good with 10 strikeouts and just two runs allowed in his six innings of work. He's got a 1.42 ERA and has been hands down the team's best starting pitcher in the early going this season. He did give up a home run and walk four batters, and he wasn't exactly efficient, throwing 106 pitches in six innings. But he limited the damage and did his job, giving his team a chance to win.

But the White Sox offense, struggling as it is, had no chance against Daniel Mengden. He came in with a 6.19 ERA and hadn't made it out of the sixth inning through his first three starts, but the White Sox made him look like a Cy Young candidate Monday, mustering just one run (a solo homer from Jose Abreu in the ninth inning of an eight-run game) on six hits over eight-plus innings.

Things fell off the rails in the bottom of the seventh, when the White Sox committed a trio of errors — including two on the same play — helping the A's to a few more runs. A soft ground ball bounced off the heel of Abreu's glove, and two batters later, Luis Avilan got the bases-loaded double-play ball he needed, only for the grounder to go right through Tim Anderson's legs at shortstop. To make matters worse, Leury Garcia whiffed while attempting to scoop up the ball in left field. Those two errors on the same play brought home two runs, and another scored when Anderson converted a much more difficult double play on the next hitter. A fourth error came in the eighth, when Adam Engel overthrew second base.

The bullpen also added to Monday night's woes, allowing four earned runs in two innings. That won't help the White Sox place in the relief-ERA standings. They entered Monday's game with a 5.35 bullpen ERA, which ranked 27th in baseball. That ERA jumped to 5.98 Monday.

Back to the bats, though. The numbers are getting pretty hard to look at. The White Sox went 0-for-5 with runners in scoring position Monday, adding to woes that stretch back more than a week. In their last eight games, the White Sox are 7-for-65 with runners in scoring position and have stranded a total of 63 base runners.

They also continued an upsetting trend of not scoring runs for Lopez, who seems to have become the new Jose Quintana when it comes to pitching well and receiving little to no run support. The White Sox offense has scored a total of three runs in the three games Lopez has started this season.

The White Sox came home from their first road trip at 3-2. They've gone 1-7 since and have been outscored 40-20 in those eight games.