The games were close, but the Chicago White Sox lost another series to a team that is in the midst of a rebuild.
After splitting the series with the Baltimore Orioles, the White Sox lost two out of three to the Motor City Kitties.
Sadly, two of the losses were by one run. But, the sole win was by a score of 8-4.
In the first game, the Sox actually lead for the majority of the game. But, Bruce Rondon, who formerly pitched for the Tigers, did what he often did for his old team. He blew a save. And, boy, did he blow it. When he entered the game in the eighth inning on Friday, the Sox were up 4-2. When he left the game, the Sox were losing 5-4. And, the team couldn’t recover.
Rondon’s history in Detroit is a story of disappointment. He was all of 17 when he was signed by the Tigers. After not panning out as a starter, the Tigers moved him to the pen. When he actually made it to Detroit in 2013, he was a fireball throwing reliever. His pitches hit 100 MPH on a regular basis, but he could not control them. He spent 2014 recovering from Tommy John surgery and he was never quite the same. He spent 2015-2017 moving between Detroit and their Triple-A team in Toledo. Along with a lack of command of his pitches, he also had problems with his attitude.
Some places are just not the right fit and Detroit was not the place for Rondon. Clearly, that hasn’t changed.
It seems as if Bruce Rondon cannot close a game in Detroit. That would be a good thing for Rick Renteria to learn when the teams meet up again the Motor City.
On a positive not, Friday’s game included a 3-4 day from Tim Anderson. He had a total of six bases after hitting his eighth home run of the season off of Mike Fiers in the fifth inning. Reynaldo Lopez pitched another gem, adding more proof that he is the current ace of the team.
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On Saturday, the Sox were able to get a win. And, a nice one it was. Saturday’s game was all Detroit until the fifth inning, then the Sox broke it open scoring two runs in the fifth, then four more in the sixth.
Again, Tim Anderson led the offense. He led of in the game, too. His final line on Saturday included a little bit of everything, but most notably, he scored three runs and four RBIs off of two home runs. Where Rondon does not perform well at Comerica Park, Anderson does. Jose Abreu also dominated, going four for four with two RBIs of his own.
Then, Sunday rolled around and the Tigers took the series with a one-run lead. The 3-2 Tigers win was credited to their newly anointed starting pitcher Blaine Hardy who had his second start of his five-year career. Notably, he out-pitched James Shields, who has been pitching for 13 long seasons. While Shields didn’t pitch a horrible game (he only gave up three runs), he didn’t get the run support he needed to win.
The Sox bats were quiet on Sunday. Even Anderson was held to a walk – which did eventually score a run. The majority of offense came from Yolmer Sanchez who earned an RBI off of a triple that scored Anderson, and from Jose Rondon who hit a home run.
It just isn’t the Sox’s year. And, these one-run losses are clearly proof of it. After this series loss, the Sox are now 16-34 on the season.