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WSI News - Totally Biased Game Recaps

Little Things Mean A Lot

May 11 vs. the L.A. Angels of Anaheim


Today's Game Rating:
Zero Stars
Despite scoring two runs and a gutsy outing by Jose Quintana, the Sox looked like mopes in a silent movie tonight.

Short Take:Jose Quintana threw 117 pitches in six innings thanks to Sox miscues, but it wasn't enough as the Sox looked bad, losing 3-2 to the Angels.

The poet and theater critic Dorothy Parker once famously said, It's not the tragedies that kill us, it's the messes. The poet Charles Bukowski carried that thought lyrically further in his poem "The Shoelace," in which he said:

...its not the large things that
send a man to the
madhouse.
. . .
no, its the continuing series of small tragedies
that send a man to the
madhouse...
not the death of his love
but a shoelace that snaps
with no time left...
The dread of life
is that swarm of trivialities
that can kill quicker than cancer
and which are always there -

Lyrical thoughts occurred to me tonight. I had the dubious pleasure of sitting in the South Side cold watching the White Sox lose 3-2 to the L.A. Angels of Anaheim. There were a few redeeming qualities in the evening, among them Paul Konerko bobbleheads and the pleasant company of friends who appreciate sardonic humor. Heavy doses of snark were necessary to get us through the chill as we watched metaphorical shoelaces snapping all over the field.

This is not a good team. Thanks, Captain Obvious, you might say, but it pains me to utter that simple truth. I have to wonder if there's some relationship between the Sox' reduced ticket prices this year and the reduced baseball quality of this year's team. The chicken or the egg? I would suggest that if you start with broken eggs you're never going to get to the chicken. The concession stand ran out of cups for hot chocolate tonight, as my companions learned the hard way, and in my chilled brain I think of that as a metaphor for the Sox' inability to find their skills. I mean, if the organization can't keep cups for the drinks, can we expect the players to find their way around the diamond?

Jose Quintana was the starting pitcher for the Sox, and though he didn't have his best stuff he heroically held on through a series of maddening errors that prolonged innings and ultimately led to the Angels' winning run. 117 pitches through six innings, 72 for strikes; a lot of pitches but not a bad ratio. His mistake tonight was giving Mike Trout a fastball up in the first inning with a runner on. Trout hit the ball with trigonometric precision into the left-center seats to give the California Cherubs an early 2-0 lead. But the game descended into ennui from there as the innings wore on.

The Sox scored two runs in the second to tie the game, but it took them five station-to-station singles to get it done. A third run might have scored on a close play at the plate: Jeff Keppinger was coming around third on Alejandro De Aza's single, but inexplicably danced around the plate instead of sliding hard and was tagged out. A frustrated groan went through the chilly ballpark.

Let's go to another quote, this time from A.J. Pierzynski describing Robin Ventura in an interview from last year: He told us that was the kind of team we were going to be in spring training: professional and fundamental. And last year they seemed to be: making plays, making cutoffs, smart baserunning. This year? There must be something in the water or an airborne malady that has fallen over this team -- the equivalent of stupid pills. In the top of the third, Albert Pujols singled. Two hitters later, Josh Hamilton hit a routine grounder to second. Tyler Greene threw the ball past Adam Dunn at first, making Hamilton safe at first and putting Pujols on third. Then Tyler Flowers let a passed ball go by, and Pujols scored to make it 3-2.

And 3-2 is where it would stay. Though no other runs scored, the Sox committed more baseball malfeasance in this game. In the first, Josh Hamilton hit one in the right-center gap that De Aza returned to the infield so slowly that Hamilton made it to third base unmolested. In the fifth, it appeared the third out would be easily made as Pujols popped up to the right side. Adam Dunn camped under it, let the ball hit his glove and fall right out. Pujols had routinely rounded first while the ball was in the air -- fortunately Quintana was covering the bag. He tagged Pujols out when Dunn found the ball and threw it to first.

And what else can we say about Adam Dunn but to state his numbers: 0-for-4 with three strikeouts. He's hitting a whopping .137, which I suppose is better than the .098 he was hitting a couple of weeks ago, but is still far below the historic Mendoza line. You know, for half his money I'd be happy to set a strikeout record. I learned that Carl Yastrzemski's grandson Mike is a hot outfielded for Vanderbilt University -- with Hawk's affection for Yaz, can it be long before we see him? He's got to hit better than Dunn.

Arthur Conan Doyle, the creator of Sherlock Holmes, once said, "It has long been an axiom of mine that the little things are infinitely the most important." Little things, like catching the ball and throwing the ball. I figure that if famous people said those things then they'll mean more than if I say them. It really is the swarm of trivialities that can kill, and we're watching it in real time.

WSI's
Hawk and Stoney's Thumb Guide:
Two thumbs down! "Stoney, you know who could've made that throw from center field or catch that popup? Yaz!" "Uh Hawk, Yaz is 73. I think you mean his grandson." "That's what I'm sayin' -- Yaz!"


submitted by tebman.

Sox Clubhouse "Pick to Click" Winner

Dayan Viciedo

Three for three with a walk and a great catch to boot. All this while his teammates were relentlessly booting other things.

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