Not to minimize the pain and suffering of watching a moribund offense scuttle its way to a single run scored over the course of nearly four hours on a Friday afternoon, when fun could be easily had in other forums, but this White Sox experience, a non-descript 3-1 loss, beat the pants off of Thursday night’s massacre.
Sure, Hector Santiago dragged his way through his seventh-straight inefficient start, departingg after walking three batters through four complete innings, racking up 94 pitches and leaving behind a mess of inherited baserunners for Jake Petricka. Due to more Ryan Raburn horrors ( an RBI double down the line) and a Michael Brantley sacrifice fly, both of those runners scored and Santiago will enter the record books as responsible for the White Sox falling into a 3-0 hole.
Sure, Indians starter Danny Salazar literally struck out so many White Sox that he became exhausted, recording nine strikeouts in 3.2 innings and hitting the pitch count limit the Indians had placed on their 23 year-old prodigy. The Indians wound up mixing and matching crazily for the rest of the day and managed to use eight pitchers against the vaunted White Sox offense, so who are the real fools, here?
And sure, the White Sox only scored a single run despite having runners in scoring position in six of nine innings, went 2-12 with runners in scoring position, stranded 13 baserunners and capped things off with inning-ending, rally-ending and game-ending outs from the ghost of Paul Konerko to lop on extra helpings of depression. The ninth-inning flyout was a ball Konerko squared up pretty solidly off Cleveland closer Chris Perez, but as has become typical, it died easily in center field.
But a 3-1 defeat will not widen any eyes as it creeps along the bottom line crawl, or provoke any wonky stat searches about the rarity of such a large margin victory. Well, it still provoked this:
— Dan Hayes (@DanHayesCSN) September 13, 2013
On the bright side, Marcus Semien made plenty of his opportunity to play by cracking out two singles and scoring the only White Sox run off a soft Konerko single in the fifth. Semien’s having plenty of issues recognizing big league-quality secondary pitches, but he’s driving what he gets a hold of so far. Conor Gillaspie also shook off the demons to have an error-free day at third base, which took some of the sting out of his 0-4, three strikeout day at the plate that mirrored Adam Dunn‘s effort, though neither benefitted from the Indians playing lefty-lefty matchups with them from the fourth inning on.
The White Sox need to finish 5-10 or better to avoid 100 losses. They have lost 13 out of their last 15.
Team Record: 58-89
Follow James Fegan on Twitter @JRFegan