Tagged: Paul Konerko

Sox Return for 6-Game Homestand

The Sox are coming back home after splitting a four-game series with the New York Yankees in New York. Currently sitting atop the American League Central division with a record of 42-37 the Sox hold a slim two-game lead over the Cleveland Indians who took a 3-0 loss to the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim tonight. The Sox send Chris Sale (9-2, 2.27) to the mound tomorrow night against Roy Oswalt (2-0, 4.26) in game one of a 3-game series with Texas Rangers, Dylan Axelrod (0-1, 4.50) will oppose Scott Feldman (2-6, 6.13) in game two, and Jose Quintana (3-1, 2.19) against Matt Harrison (11-3, 3.16) in game three.

Paul Konerko, Chris Sale, and (HOLY CRAP!) Adam Dunn will represent the White Sox in next Tuesday’s All-Star Game. As opposed to last Tuesday’s All-Star Game when nobody represented them. Jake Peavy is up for the last remaining roster spot in this year’s Final Vote so text #VoteJakeTheSnake44 or something like that to a phone number to vote for him.

Tune into AM 670 The Score  tomorrow night at 6:30 for the pregame show because radio is so much better than television. No seriously. Alright I’m kidding.

But seriously.

Go Sox!!

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6/9 – Game 1 vs A’s

Who was that huge guy with the bat that hit a home run in the eighth inning? He had Adam Dunn’s jersey on…

I’m gonna need to see eight more one-for-three or two-for-four games before Dunn earns back my trust. I think that’s a pretty reasonable number, and definitely achievable with one hundred one games left to play in the season. (Can you believe that? Already. Man.)

Mark Buehrle keeps turning in good outing after good outing and it’s making me very happy. Another seven solid innings out of the left-hander tonight as he improved his season record to six wins against four losses. I know we beat up on a team that came into the game having lost nine in a row, but a win is a win, right?

The offense was huge tonight. Dunn had a home run, Konerko had another homer (how many games in a row is that now?), Pierre, Vizquel, Ramirez, and Quentin all drove in runs as well. Everyone contributed in this game and that more than anything will help us win ballgames. It’s nice for one player to have a huge game that we can ride for nine innings (see: Carlos Quentin), but when the guys work as a team we’ll have a higher chance at a win. I know I probably sounded like the John Madden of amateur baseball analysts right there but I like to stress the importance of teamwork.

Didn’t I just say yesterday that this team would be a lot better if Dunn was the Dunn we thought we were getting when we signed him? The next game we get a 9-4 win. Keep it up, big guy. And you too, Rios! I see that two-for-five in the box score, don’t try to hide from me.

Jesse Crain and Will Ohman both appeared in tonight’s game. Crain pitched pretty well and despite allowing one run so did Ohman. Two points for Crain and, even though I don’t usually give out points to pitchers who surrender a run – it was a good game tonight so I’m feeling generous – a point for Ohman as well.

Young Graham Godfrey will be making his MLB debut for the A’s tomorrow against Edwin Jackson (4-5, 4.50). Let’s give him a debut he’ll never forget. In the bad way, though.

Go Sox!!

6/7 – Game 2 vs. Mariners

Alright, I’m gonna try writing tonight’s post on my iPad. I can’t edit the widget for bullpen points on here so I’ll have to do that later. Other than that (and typos I’ll have to fix), this should go smoothly.

Phil Humber is climbing into the upper tier of American League pitchers. Anyone who can out-duel Felix Hernandez is one heck of a pitcher. Even Humber’s ERA is better than Felix’s! 2.87 as of the conclusion of the game against Hernandez’s 3.29. I don’t want to get way ahead of things, but could there be a Cy Young award on the way to the South Side? If not, at least give the guy Comeback Player of the Year,

Paul Konerko and Carlos Quentin are swinging hot bats lately. Konerko launched his fourteenth home run of the season in the second inning and Quentin hit his fifteenth (a frozen rope down the left field line) of the year in the third. Both are among the tops in the Majors in runs batted in (Konerko with 47 and Quentin with 42). And of course there was Omar Vizquel’s two-run triple in the third inning, a few batters before CQ’s laser. This wouldn’t be a proper recap of the offense without an Adam Dunn mention so here it is: he didn’t play. Mark Teahen manned first base tonight while Paulie filled the DH spot.

Here’s a thought to chew on… Dayan Viciedo is ripping triple-A apart right now. What if we call him up and put him at DH? I know we have Dunn and his $56 million dollar roster spot to deal with, but I say we convert him to the leagues highest payed pinch hitter. It could work, right?

Not much to say about the bullpen. These are the good games when I have nothing but praise for whoever comes out of the pen. Chris Sale was the lone reliever to make The Jog tonight, pitching one inning and some change, allowing one hit. Two points for Sale. See how nice that was? No Thornton explosions and Jesse Crain nail biters to report. Just a solid outing we can watch in peace.

The Sox will go for the sweep tomorrow as they’ll send Gavin Floyd (6-5, 3.84) to the mound to go against Jason Vargas (4-3, 3.96). Wait, no… Vargas is going against Floyd, right? Yeah. The way I write these always sounds funny to me. I’ll pay more attention from now on.

I fixed twelve typos in this post and if there are any I didn’t catch, point them out and… I dunno. You’d make a good editor some day.

Go Sox!!

EDIT: Turns out I can edit the widget I just have to go to WordPress in Safari. Perhaps I never need to leave my room again…?

6/6 – Game 1 vs. Mariners

That’s more like it, gentlemen!

John Danks is finally into the win column after a very frustrating (for both Sox fans and Danks) first two months of the year. This will have to go on my Games of the Year list just for the sake of Danks finally earning a win. If I’m wrong, let me know.

Adam Dunn continues to struggle. He struck out twice, climbing up to the eighty strikeout rung on the ladder, and left six men on base. Can you believe that? Six runners. Stranded. Absolutely ridiculous. I’m beginning to think there’s no hope for Dunn this season. If he were to heat up it should’ve been sooner than June. Quentin, Konerko, and Lillibridge are carrying this team right now. Speaking of Konerko, the captain hit his thirteenth home run of the season in the fourth inning. To go along with those thirteen homers, Konerko has driven in forty-six runs and is sporting a batting average of .314. Those are quality numbers

John Danks’ seven innings and some change earned him a standing ovation when he exited in in the eighth inning. Six strikeouts and one walk, Danks allowed just one unearned run in his best start of the 2011 season.

Jesse Crain entered the ballgame for the last two outs of the eighth inning and struck out a batter. Then Sergio Santos logged his eleventh save of the year as the Sox took game one of this series by a final score of three to one. Two points for Crain and Santos.

Well, if you follow me on Twitter, you’ll already know what I got from FedEx today. A bright, shiny iPad 2. It seems like forever ago that I ordered it online from Apple and it finally came today. I was able to watch the Sox game on the MLB At-Bat app and, even though it’s pretty much a portable Gameday, it was pretty to look at. I’m gonna really enjoy using this thing for the rest of the year and beyond. I’ll get some pictures up tomorrow.

Speaking of tomorrow, we get a pretty good pitching matchup. Phil Humber (4-3, 3.06) will be opposed by Felix Hernandez (6-4, 3.04). Should be a good’n, guys!

Go Sox!!

6/1 – Game 3 @ Red Sox

The Sox are slowly but surely climbing their way up the standings in the AL Central. The Indians have been cooling off lately (although they beat the Jays 13-9 today) and the Sox are heating up. Dying first place team + red-hot bottom feeders = recipe for Soxcess. (I’ll stop there, I promise.)

Gavin Floyd started the game a little shakily today, giving up three runs in the bottom of the second inning. He settled in after that as he went on to pitch six and two thirds innings, striking out one and walking one. His record in Boston remains perfect as he picked up his fifth career win at Fenway Park. My friend Keleigh has said (several times this year) that Gavin needs to stop and breathe every once in a while. He seems to get in a hurry on the mound and we’ve seen that his stuff is good enough for him to be a dominating starting pitcher. Apparently he stopped to breathe today.

If the Sox go on to bigger and better things this season we’re gonna have to have a Brent Lillibridge day. I doubt we’d be where we are if it weren’t for this scrappy little guy. The Bridge (this is probably the most unoriginal nickname I’ve ever given) drove in two runs today, one on an RBI double off of the Big Green Monster in the fourth inning and a solo homer over the said Green Monster in the sixth. Paul Konerko had arguably his best game of the season as he went three-for-four with three runs batted in. He had a huge two-run home run off of Jonathan Papelbon (who was having a pretty good season) in the ninth inning to ensure our 7-4 victory. Oh, and Adam Dunn was disappointing again. No hits in four at-bats, two strikeouts. Come on, man… $56 million.

This is embarrassing.

Chris Sale is now becoming one of the more reliable arms in the bullpen. Whatever problems he was having earlier in the year he’s fixed them now. Perhaps he can share his magical ways with Adam Dunn? Anyway, Gavin Floyd left the game with two outs in the seventh so Sale came in to finish off that frame, then he stuck around a little bit for the eighth inning. Three Sweep Points for Sale. Sergio Santos came on in the ninth inning to nail down the save – his tenth of the year – and he’ll earn three Sweep Points as well.

I’m still really excited that we managed to sweep the Boston Red Sox. Of all teams!  This was pretty much the equivalent of when I played for the Yankees about four years ago and our team beat the only undefeated team in the league. It was awesome. We weren’t terrible, we finished with a 12-3 record, but that game definitely gave us a confidence boost. Hopefully this sweep will have the same effect on the Boys in Black.

Much deserved off-day tomorrow before we come home to play the Detroit Tigers on Friday. Mark Buehrle (4-4, 3.91) will be laughably opposed by Andrew Oliver (0-0, 4.50).

Go Sox!!

And whoever found my blog by searching for “can you pitch one third of an inning and get a save,” you’re awesome.

5/30 – Game 1 @ Red Sox

Alright. This game made absolutely no sense. How on earth can we beat the Red Sox and not the Blue Jays? Get someone in the Higher-Ups on the phone. I’m upset.

Jake Peavy was solid today. Seven strong innings, giving up three runs and striking out two, walking none. Peavy and Humber have both been huge this season and they’re the only starting pitchers keeping us in the division race. I can’t even put into words how much those guys mean to this team right now. If you remember, I had serious reservations about Peavy coming into this season. I wanted the team to take their time and not rush it. The situation was high risk, higher reward and we’re getting rewarded. You can’t handle an unknown injury much better than Kenny and Ozzie did.

The offense tonight was supplied by The Usual Suspects. A.J. Pierzynski plated two runs with a double in the top of the first inning, then Paul Konerko went deep for his eleventh home run of the season in the third inning. After Boston tied it up in the bottom of the third the White Sox jumped back ahead in the top of the sixth, scoring two runs on an Alexei Ramirez double and another two on Carlos Quentin’s single immediately after.

Dan Bernstein of 670 The Score’s afternoon show Tweeted this after Ramirez’s double: “Alexei is having a helluva year, in all phases of the game. In a disappointing season so far, he’s a bright spot.” I couldn’t agree more. His twenty-seven RBI’s are more than I thought he’d have two months into the season and he’s the second best shortstop in the game as of right now (Elvis Andrus of the Rangers edging him by a fraction). He’s also had some clutch hits over the past few weeks with tonight’s double at the top of the list. So glad we got this guy.

Peavy pitched the seventh inning then the bullpen took over. Jesse Crain pitched two thirds of an inning before Matt Thornton came on to face David Ortiz and eventually finish the remainder of the game. Thornton has been slowly earning back my confidence. It used to be that whenever I heard he was warming up in the bullpen I’d know that we were in for a fun inning but he’s becoming the old Thornton once again. I like it. Because of this huge win after such a terrible series in Canada, Crain and Thornton get three points for keeping their cleats on the necks of the Red Sox.

I’m excited that we were able to get a win against such a good team. Feels nice to beat a really hot ballclub like this. Gavin Floyd (5-5, 3.69) probably won’t pitch tomorrow after his outing in Toronto. I remember Ed and DJ saying something about who was pitching for the Sox tomorrow but I can’t remember who. If it’s Floyd, forget I said any of this. Whoever it is will be facing Alfredo Aceves (2-0, 2.22) of the Red Sox.

Go Sox!!

…what?

Oh! The White ones.

5/25 – Game 3 @ Rangers

Adam Dunn is really starting to bug me. I’m still tolerating him because he’s adjusting to both being a full-time designated hitter and American League pitching… but really, Adam? He struck out with runners on first and third in a situation that could’ve given us a shot at winning this ballgame. Not only did he strike out but he struck out pinch hitting. Ozzie put him in there for one reason: to drive in a run. Last time I checked, unless the ball is dropped, you can’t drive in a run on a strikeout.

He’s up to sixty strikeouts in one hundred fifty-one at-bats. He’s batting .192. Not quite $56 million numbers thus far into his Sox career.

We got the good Pitcher of Mystery today but unfortunately our offense couldn’t muster up enough… well, offense to get him a win. Paul Konerko drove in the lone run for the Sox in the top of the seventh inning, scoring Alexei Ramirez on a RBI single. Floyd is remaining consistently inconsistent. Look at his numbers over his past six starts going back to his start against the Yankees

4/26 @ NYY | 8 IP | 4 H | 2 R | 2 ER | 1 BB | 10 SO | 3-1 win

5/1 vs. BAL | 6 IP | 7 H | 6 R | 6 ER | 2 BB | 5 SO | 6-4 loss

5/7 @ SEA | 8 IP | 3 H | 0 R | 0 ER | 2 BB | 6 SO | 6-0 win

5/14 @ OAK | 4.1 IP | 9 H | 5 R | 5 ER | 2 BB | 4 SO | 6-2 loss

5/19 vs. CLE | 7 IP | 5 H | 1 R | 1 ER | 1 BB | 3 SO | 8-2 win

5/25 @ TEX | 7 IP | 3 H | 2 R | 1 ER | 1 BB | 1 SO | 2-1 loss

Granted in today’s start it had more to do with the lack of offense than the lack of good pitching from Gavin. That’s a winning pitching line any day. Except today. But, as I pointed out, one start he’s holding the opposition down and the next start he’s getting beaten up. It just doesn’t make sense. Today’s start confuses me, though… he was scheduled for a loss and got it… but he had winning numbers. Will he have losing numbers and earn a win in his next start to get back on track?
Good job by our two guys out of the bullpen today. Both Chris Sale and Tony Pena earn two points for their one inning of work. (Sale pitched one third of the eighth inning and Pena finished the other two thirds.)
Our second big road trip of the month continues tomorrow as the Sox head up to Canada for a four-game series against the Blue Jays. Phil Humber (3-3, 3.10), our consistently consistent pitcher, will take on Brandon Morrow (2-2, 5.06), a pretty good pitcher.
Someone inject some life into Adam Dunn’s bat, please.
Go Sox!! [Had to put those hyphens in there to separate the paragraphs because Floyd’s stats were originally in bullet point and that really does mess up the spacing. I apologize for the ugliness but it looked even worse without those there]