A surprise weekday appearance of the 1983 jerseys brought a surprise defeat of Justin Verlander and the Tigers. Word on the street is it was the manager’s choice to make the uniform change. I suppose when all else fails try something new and if it works, definitely credit the change. Science or not, the offense showed up and the White Sox salvage a game to avoid the sweep.
White Sox (40-59): 7
Alexei started the hitting with a single through the left side of the infield and after an Adam Dunn walk Paul Konerko dropped a short pop into the outfield that would bring Ramirez around to score. Jeff Keppinger followed with a softly hit single out to right field that was misplayed by Torii Hunter which allowed Adam Dunn to score. Paul Konerko was inexplicably sent as well, but was tagged out easily at the plate as Joe McEwing apparently forgot who he was waving around. It’s unclear why Konerko was sent at all. To watch him, it’s as if there is no urgency to reach the next base. It’s not a mindset, it’s a physical limitation, one you would think the coaching staff would be aware of by now. Nonetheless, the “big” inning was finished and as it turned out, the outcome was not affected by the gaffe.
Peavy moved along early without issue, getting help from some Conor Gillaspie handiwork at the hot corner and a missed call by Bruce Dreckman on a bang-bang play involving Prince Fielder. He faced the minimum through 3 innings, the only blemish being a walk issued to Brayan Pena, who was erased by a Ramon Santiago 4-6-3 double play.
The second time through the lineup proved a little more difficult as Austin Jackson lead off the 4th with a single and Torii Hunter knocked him in with a 2-run HR to center field. He then settled back in, not allowing another hit until Victor Martinez took him deep in 7th. He did complete the inning, seemingly walking away with a 7 inning, 7 K, 3 hit, 3 run outing. The Ventura gave Jake the opportunity to come out in the 8th. It seemed to not make much sense, but my gut tells me the skipper just wanted to take Jake out mid-inning to give the crowd an opportunity to applaud the bulldog off the mound for what might be the final time. Unfortunately Brayan Pena was the one that benefited, tagging Peavy for his third long ball of the game, pushing his line to 4 hits and 4 runs. It’s not usually enough to deliver a victory for this team, but today it was.
Tyler Flowers came through in the bottom half of the 4th, knocking Gillaspie in with a lined shot to left field that Andy Dirks appeared to have some trouble locating and again in the 6th taking Verlander into the White Sox bullpen for his 9th HR of the year. Alexei Ramirez knocked in a couple of RBIs of his own, singling in a pair during the four run 4th that included Alex Rios adding to both the score and his perceived trade value by knocking Ramirez in with a single of his own.
Plus: Jake Peavy putting himself on display for what, as talk would indicate, may be the last time in a White Sox uniform. A game that sees the White Sox put up 7 runs isn’t going to be complained about. A lot of the hits were not hit hard but plenty were, including the blast off the bat of Tyler Flowers, making up for all the missed playing time that’s been handed over to Josh Phegley of late.
Minus: An error free game was within reach, but Adam Dunn was charged with one in the 8th on a low throw from Alexei. So close.
Player of the Game:
Alexei Ramirez – .171 WPA