CHICAGO, IL- To open the series against the Cleveland Indians (8-7), the White Sox (7-7) sent out embattled ace Jose Quintana on the mound. In similar fashion, the Indians’ #1 pitcher, and former Cy Young winner, Corey Kluber, toed the rubber against the south siders.
The first two innings were relatively uneventful, as both pitchers seemed to settle in early. Then, in the top of the third frame, former White Sox Austin Jackson doubled to get things going, and the Indians capitalized after a bunt and a wild pitch scored Jackson. However, Quintana limited the damage to just that one run.
In the fourth inning, Quintana allowed two walks before getting a pickoff to attain the second out. However, Brandon Guyer wouldn’t let Quintana off the hook, as he launched a home run to left center to extend the margin to 3-0.
That total would remain for the rest of the game, as the White Sox failed to solve Kluber, but their pitches fared well too. Quintana pitched almost flawlessly the rest of the way, allowing a couple baserunners but an unsuccessful steal and a double play allowed him to face the minimum after the fourth inning. He exited the game prior to the seventh inning, as he notched a quality start, while lowering his ERA from 6.75 to 6.17.
Kluber kept rolling right along. In fact, the south siders only managed one runner in scoring position the entire game. That was Tim Anderson in the bottom of the fourth with no outs, but the Sox’ heart of the order could not score him. When it was all said and done, the White Sox had collected three hits. It’s the sixth game in a row that the team has failed to break the threshold of four runs. At this point, the offense’s hot start seems to have been an illusion.
Anthony Swarzak: 1.1 IP, 0 H, 2 K
Nate Jones: 1.1 IP, 0 H, 3 K
Corey Kluber: 9.0 IP, 3 H, 2 BB, 9 K
Brandon Guyer: 1-2, 1 HR, 2 RBI
Jose Quintana improved greatly from his last outing, and it’s encouraging to see a quality start out of him. Additionally, the bullpen continued to be great.
It seems like the entire White Sox offense is mired in a slump. No one can get many multi-hit games, and no part of the order is faring particularly well. Jacob May is yet to get a hit after nine games played. Cody Asche is still horrid, and Jose Abreu fell flat after a nice game against the Yankees.
Furthermore, the best hitter for the White Sox right now, Avisail Garcia, lost his on-base streak at 14 games. He’s still hitting .400 however, to look on the bright side.
Today, the White Sox announced James Shields is on the 10-day DL with a strained right lat, so newcomer veteran Mike Pelfrey (0-2, 7.50 with Charlotte Knights) will take the hill against the Indians. Pelfrey has had little to no experience in the pros recently, as the Sox signed him for depth, given the injury situation with Carlos Rodon. The Indians are sending out Carlos Carrasco (1-1, 2.33 ERA), as they hope to continue to stifle the White Sox offense.
First Pitch: 7:10 pm (CT) (Saturday)
TV: CSN-Chicago/CSN-Chicago+ – *Check your local listings*