What can I say about Paul Konerko?
It has been 16 amazing years in the Chicago White Sox organization. I have seen numerous games with Paulie in a White Sox uniform. I am sure numerous memories will flood my memories over the coming days, however, right now my mind and heart are mostly filled with pure joy. The ceremony before the game was perfect. From Hawk Harrelson leading the fans in a chant of “Paulie,” to multiple tribute videos where shown and Konerko’s best trait, his loyalty, stood out. Many family, former teammates and friends were there to honor Konerko. It was awesome.
Numerous parting gifts were given including pictures, a seat made of bats, signed baseballs by all of his 2005 World Series teammates, two guitars, the baseball Konerko hit for a grand slam caught by a fan in the 2005 World Series, and a statue of Paulie was unveiled too. So cool.
Then Konerko spoke and thanked his family, the front office, the Kansas City organization who the White Sox were playing against, former and current coaches, players and teammates who helped him in his career and the fans whom he called “friends” because they mean more to him than just fans.
The game was just as great too. Konerko went 0-for-3 with two strikeouts, yet although Konerko did not get a hit, it was still awesome to watch the game. Everytime he came to the plate he received a standing ovation and loud cheers. In the 7th, replaced by Andy Wilkins, the fans roared.
In the game it was fitting that Jose Abreu, Konerko’s replacement had a big night. He went 2-for-2 with a homerun, two RBI’s and two walks. Abreu’s 2-run homer was his 36th on the season, a Chicago White Sox rookie record. The homer came in the 1st inning after Alexei Ramirez drove in Adam Eaton who walked and stole 2nd base to begin the game. The White Sox took a 4-0 lead on a solo blast by Josh Phegley in the 2nd inning.
John Danks pitched well as he threw seven solid innings, allowing just two runs on five hits, while walking two and striking out three. When he left the game, the Sox had a 4-2 lead. Yet Josh Phegley, hit yet another homerun to put the Sox back ahead 5-2.
That homer would loom large because the Royals, a serious World Series contender, fought back but fell just short. They scored a run in the 8th off Ronald Bellisario. Bellisario allowed a walk and two straight singles and did not record an out as the Royals cut the lead to 5-3.
Eric Surkamp, who entered the game with runners on 1st and 2nd and no outs was able to get Eric Hosmer to ground into a double play. Jake Petricka entered the game and was able to get Billy Butler to ground out to 3rd base to end the inning.
Petricka walked Alex Gordon to lead off the 9th before leaving the game due to an injury. Javy Guerra entered the game and would record the first two outs in the frame before an RBI single by Mike Moustakas to cut the Chicago lead to 5-4. Yet Alcides Escobar would ground out to short to end the game.
A White Sox victory was the perfect way to honor Paul Konerko on this day.
I guess there is only one more thing I could say.
That was so ugly on numerous levels.
1. Five errors. FIVE. An error by Avisail Garcia in foul territory in right that appeared to be an easy catch in the 2nd inning. A throwing error by Marcus Semien in the 4th that led to a run. A fielding error by Marcus Semien and a throwing error by John Danks in the 5th that would put two runners on base and lead to two unearned runs. And finally another fielding error by Semien in the 9th that would lead to a five run inning three of those runs being unearned. It was a season-high for the team and the first time they had committed that many errors in a game since July 7th, 2010 against the Angels.
2. John Danks had another terrible night. Although his defense did not help him, he did not help himself either as he allowed four runs (two earned) on seven hits, waking one and striking out three over six innings.
3. The bullpen of Maikel Cleto, Matt Lindstrom and Scott Snodgrass allowed allowed a combined total of seven runs (four earned), on 11 hits, no walks and two strikeouts over three innings.
4. Once again the offense struggled to score putting together just two runs on seven hits and going 0-for-4 with runners in scoring position. The only bright spots were Dayan Viciedo’s solo blast and Carlos Sanchez RBI double in the 7th. Although Sanchez was tagged out at third on the play.
New day. New game. Tonight at 8:10pm ET Chris Bassitt (0-1; 7.36 ERA) will make his 2nd start (and 3rd appearance) on the season as he goes against Jeff Samardzjia (4-5; 3.70 ERA). Bassitt is making the start to give extra rest to Chris Sale and Jose Quintana.
LETS GO WHITE SOX!!!
After a day off on Monday, the Chicago White Sox got back to playing baseball with a 6-3 win in 10 innings on Tuesday over the Minnesota Twins. Then on Wednesday they suffered an 11-4 loss. Now after having another day off yesterday, they will begin a 3-game set with the Cleveland Indians tonight.
On Tuesday Tyler Flowers and his “magic glasses” helped propel the White Sox to a win. Down 2-0 in the 2nd inning, Flowers tied the game with a 2-run blast. With the White Sox ahead 4-3 in the 10th, Flowers gave the White Sox some big insurance runs as he hit his 2nd homer of the game with another 2-run shot to put the Sox up for good by a score of 6-3.
The other runs for the Sox in the game were scored by a Carlos Sanchez RBI double in the 2nd and a game winning homer by Dayan Viciedo in the 10th. Sanchez had a solid game going 3-for-4 while Viciedo went 2-for-4 with a RBI and run scored.
Hector Noesi struggled early allowing three runs in the first two innings, yet he settled down to allow just three runs on nine hits, walking none and striking out five over seven innings.
The bullpen did great as well as they allowed no runs on no hits, walking two and striking out two over a three inning span. The bullpen featured Javy Guerra, Eric Surkamp, Daniel Webb (who got the victory) and Jake Petricka (who got the save).
On Wednesday John Danks struggled on the mound allowing seven runs on 11 hits, walking one and striking out three in just 4 2/3 innings. The game was actually tied at three before Danks was killed in the 5th leading to a Twins route.
The White Sox are now 63-76 and have matched the same number of wins they had all of last season with 23 games to go. I’d say that is an improvement. Despite not being a playoff team, this has to give all White Sox fans including myself some hope going into 2015 if they can improve their bullpen.
Tonight at 7:05pm Chris Sale (11-3; 2.11 ERA) ill take on T.J. Hose (2-3; 3.92 ERA).
LETS GO WHITE SOX!!!
The Chicago White Sox (60-73) are now 7-17 in the month of August with their most recent loss to the Cleveland Indians by a 3-2 final last night. Despite the fact that John Danks pitched well last night, the Sox still came up on the short end of the scoreboard.
Danks, who has struggled lately, allowed just two runs on five hits, walking two and striking out five.
The Sox offense struggled however going 2-for-6 with runners in scoring position and leaving six runners on base. Jose Abreu did drive in his 97th RBI on the season and Adam Dunn drove in a run but that was it.
Tonight the White Sox will begin a 4-game set with the Detroit Tigers, that includes a split double-header on Saturday. Scott Carroll (5-8; 5.05 ERA) will face off against Justin Verlander (11-11; 4.82 ERA) at 8:10pm tonight.
LETS GO WHITE SOX!!!
The Chicago White Sox (59-71) are now losers of six straight games and have suffered two straight series sweeps. They are also 6-15 in the month of August after being 53-56 before the month began. They are also now at a season low 12 games under .500 on the season. Robin Ventura’s job may be in serious jeopardy if he keeps this up. He may not even be around to see the fruits of all the labor that Rick Hahn has put in since becoming GM as many, including myself, are expecting the White Sox to contend next season and beyond.
On Friday Jose Abreu gave the White Sox an early 3-0 lead as he hit his 33rd homer on the season. He still leads all of baseball with 94 RBI’s thus far on the season and is 2nd in home runs behind Nelson Cruz (34). His OPS is 2nd only to Giancarlo Stanton of the Miami Marlins (.969).
The lead however would not last. Starter John Danks surrendered three runs on six hits, walking three and striking out four for a no-decision.
(Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)
Despite getting 3 hits from Carlos Sanchez who went 3-for-4 with a run scored as he replaced the traded Gordon Beckham, the White Sox were 2-for-8 with runners in scoring position and left seven runners on base.
Daniel Webb surrendered the walk-off single in the 9th for the loss.
On Saturday the White Sox lost 5-3. Scott Carroll allowed five runs (four earned) on seven hits, walking three and striking out none over six innings. The bullpen got a lift from Matt Lindstrom who had by far his best outing since returning from the DL as he threw two scoreless innings without allowing a hit or a base-runner. Yet it was not enough.
The Sox received RBI’s from Abreu, Sanchez and Ramirez yet were 2-for-10 with runners in scoring position and left eight runners on base as they were not able to rally.
Today the White Sox were swept in a 7-4 loss in 10 innings. The White Sox did rally to tie the game as they were down 4-3 in the 9th but lost in extra innings on a 3-run homer by Brian McCann.
Avisail Garcia hit a game tying homer in the 9th off closer David Robertson but it was not enough. It was also great to see the Yankees pay respect to Paul Konerko before the game, but I would have loved to see this one end in a White Sox win.
Chris Sale received a no-decision as he did great early on. The Sox were actually ahead early in this one. Alexei Ramirez in a rare leadoff role hit a solo homer to begin the game. The Sox scored two more runs in the top of the 6th on Conor Gillaspie’s 2-run blast for a 3-0 lead.
Sale had allowed no runs, two hits and one walk through the first 5 1/3 innings. Then Dayan Viciedo made an error on a routine fly ball that allowed Martin Prado to get to 2nd base on a ball he should have caught. The next batter, Mark Teixeira doubled to put the Yankees on the board with the unearned run. After eventually loading the bases on two walks, with two outs Zelous Wheeler was hit by a pitch. Ichiro Suzuki then singled to right scoring two runs to put the Yankees ahead as they would win the game in extras.
The White Sox will have a day off tomorrow and then try to get back on track as they start a 3-game set with the Cleveland Indians (66-63). Jose Quintana (6-10; 3.25 ERA) will face T.J. House (2-3; 3.80 ERA).
LETS GO WHITE SOX!!!
For the first time since 2011, Mark Buehrle took the to the mound at U.S. Cellular Field. The return of Mark Buehrle, this time as a visitor to Chicago, was not quite what the Chicago White Sox fans had hoped. Yes, I do believe that a lot of them were rooting for Buehrle, but they would have loved to see a White Sox victory. That was not to be however, as the Toronto Blue Jays came out on top in this one 6-3.
Buehrle had been struggling as of late. He began this season with a 10-1 record and a 2.10 ERA in his first 12 starts this year. Yet over his last 12 he has posted a 1-7 record with an inflated 4.76 ERA thanks to allowing 11 homers in that 12 game stretch.
Last night he was a bit more effective as he allowed three runs over seven hits, walking none and striking out three. While most importantly, allowing no home runs over 5 1/3 innings for a no-decision. It was cool to see Buehrle constantly cheered each time he took the mound and left it after each inning. He deserved it. The standing ovation he received as he left the mound in the 6th inning was one of pure respect and thankfulness by White Sox fans.
Buehrle’s counterpart and pupil, John Danks, also had a no-decision in this game. He allowed three runs early on, but settled down as the game went on. His final line was similar to that of Buehrle’s as he allowed three runs on seven hits, walking one with no strikeouts.
The one man who got to Buehrle in a big way on this night was Avisail Garcia. Garcia was playing in his first game for the White Sox since landing on the DL back on April 9th. He was recalled as Moises Sierra was sent to the 15-day DL with a strained left oblique muscle. Garcia was expected to miss the entire year, but has made a remarkable return. He went 2-for-4 on the night with a double in his first at-bat and an RBI single in the 6th that began the White Sox comeback from down 3-0.
The Sox then collected two runs off of reliever Dustin McGowan. McGowan threw a wild-pitch that allowed Jose Abreu and Avisail Garcia to move into scoring position. Abreu would score on a sacrifice-fly and Paul Konerko would tie the game with a 2-out RBI single. Both runs were charged to Buehrle.
Sadly however, as Danks was relieved to begin the 7th by Matt Lindstrom, the Blue Jays quickly would re-gain the lead scoring three runs on four hits off Lindstrom. The Sox were never able to recover and lost 6-3.
The White Sox also did make a few other minor moves before this game began. Javy Guerra was placed on the bereavement list and the Sox in turn re-called up Eric Surkamp from Charlotte. Charlie Leesman was also designated for assignment.
The White Sox are now 58-65 on the season. This afternoon the Sox will close out the series against the Blue Jays as Scott Carroll (4-7; 4.81 ERA) will take on Drew Hutchison (8-10; 4.60 ERA). LET’S GO WHITE SOX!!
The story was not the game but the moves that were made and not made.
Yes the White Sox won the game 7-4 yesterday but the Tigers may have won the trade deadline as they acquired Tampa Bay Rays ace David Price for Drew Smyly and Austin Jackson and others in a three team trade. Price goes to Detroit and gives them the last three Cy Young award winners in the same rotation in Verlander, Scherzer and Price. Yikes. That will be tough. Jackson goes to the Seattle Mariners, Smyly goes to Tampa Bay. Class A shortstop Willy Adames one of the Tigers top prospects also goes to Tampa Bay. Infielder Nick Franklin of Seattle also went to Tampa Bay.
In the game it was odd to see Jackson leave the field right during the middle of Gordon Beckham’s at-bat. But that is the business side of baseball. The other business side is sometimes moves don’t get made. I am sure Rick Hahn tried to make some moves but the White Sox stood pat in the end. John Danks, the Sox starter for the day allowed four runs on seven hits, walked four and struck out two over five innings in a no-decision.
Along with Danks, Gordon Beckham, Dayan Viciedo, Alejandro De Aza, and others remain on the team for now. But don’t be surprised if the Sox made a move at the waiver deadline.
In the actual play on the field Jose Abreu went 3-for-3, walking twice and extending his hitting streak to 20 games. He also raised his batting average to .305 on the season.
Along with Abreu, Adam Eaton went 3-for-5 and drove in two runs and also scored twice. Alexei Ramirez and Paul Konerko each had two hits and drove in a run. Gordon Beckham, Tyler Flowers and Moises Sierra each had an RBI in the game while Sierra collected four hits.
Ronald Bellisario did well in relief throwing 1 2/3 shutout innings allowing just one hit for the win. Javy Guerra had four strikeouts in his 1 1/3 innings and Jake Petricka earned his 6th save of the season with a scoreless 9th for the 7-4 win.
Paul Konerko reached a franchise best 4,000 total bases as the Sox improved to 53-56 on the season.
Tonight at 8:10pm ET the Sox begin a series with the Minnesota Twins back in Chicago. Chris Sale (10-1; 1.88 ERA) will take on Logan Darnell (0-1; 7.88 ERA) who struggled in his first career start on Saturday against the White Sox.
LET’S GO WHITE SOX!!!