The homestand that was beyond bad ended yesterday. Somehow with a walk-off win and a series win against the Orioles. The White Sox somehow managed to win the game, despite their best efforts to screw things up. Now, they are on the road again with a brief visit back here next Monday to make up the final game in the worst series of the year. Here is what you need to know for the stop in Florida:
2013 Record: White Sox 34-48, 5th in AL Central. Rays 46-40, 4th in AL East.
2013 Season Series: 2-2
All-Time Series Record: 69-51 (The Sox are 34-27 at the Rays)
The following pitchers are expected to pitch in the three games:
Dylan Axelrod: 3-4, 4.57 ERA, 51K vs. Jeremy Hellickson: 7-3, 4.90 ERA, 80K
Chris Sale: 5-7, 2.79 ERA, 114K vs. Matt Moore: 11-3, 3.65 ERA, 92K
John Danks: 2-5, 4.38 ERA, 36K vs. David Price: 2-4, 4.65 ERA, 59K
Friday’s game is at 6:10 pm, Saturday’s game is at 6:15 pm and Sunday’s game is at 12:40 pm. All times CDT.
Part of me feels bad wondering just how much longer this miserable White Sox baseball is going to go on. The All-Star game break is coming up. For fans of this team, it might not be soon enough. For the players, they are probably welcoming it to get away from a season that just isn’t going their way. Then of course, there is the looming non-waiver trade deadline to consider as well.
What players will still be with this team at the end of the month? Jesse Crain and Paul Konerko were both placed on the 15-day disabled list on July 3rd. Jesse was a guy who many considered would be moved and might possibly bring back something in return of substance. Now, he may not go anywhere unless there is a general manager out there willing to take a chance on a guy who is currently injured. As for Konerko being moved, he’d have to approve a trade, but who knows if anyone would want him at this point.
There are still a number of guys who should be drawing interest, such as Alex Rios and of course many of the pitchers. Which begs the question of just what is Rick Hahn going to do and will fans actually be happy with what he decides to do, especially if he chooses to tear this thing down and start over. That might be a tough sell for fans who are used to seeing the team go for it every season. Really hard when you consider that the White Sox have pitching to sell and pitching generally goes a very long way in helping to win championships.
At least they ended the homestand on a high with a win. Sure, they did try their best to give it away in the eighth inning of yesterday’s game. Fortunately, Adam Dunn hit a walk-off home run to save the day. That game was also the third straight July 4th walk-off win the White So have had in recent years. I’m sure they wish every day could be like July 4th.
The Rays however are hoping to get on a serious roll. They have David Price back after he spent some time on the disabled list and in his first start back, he seven innings of three-hit ball against the Astros. That always bodes well for a team to get their staff ace back after injury. More importantly, getting him back and him pitching well. They will have to do with limited play from Evan Longoria who is dealing with plantar fasciitis (PF) in his right foot. As a person not a “fan” of his team, it is nice that one of their key members is down and out right now. However, the PF does suck that he has to deal with that. I’m sure anyone who is a fan of the Chicago Bulls has heard WAY too much about PF with the struggles that Joakim Noah dealt with last season.
It will for sure be an interesting series. The Sox have been making some roster moves. With Crain and Konerko going down, Brent Morel and David Purcey were called up to take their spots. Now, Josh Phegley is going to get the call to the show. More moves are on the way, but Jordan Danks has been sent back to Charlotte. Partly due to not getting many at-bats. Also in play is the potential for Dewayne Wise to skip a rehab assignment and rejoin the team. Today could bring a flurry of activity for sure.
As for the series, I’m expecting maybe 6 runs total over the three games scored by the White Sox. Chris Sale will again go double-digits in strikeouts and walk away with a loss because there is no offense. And the defense will of course look like a bunch of five-year olds playing ball. If I’m proven wrong, I will take it happily.