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WSI News - Totally Biased Game Recaps

Peavy’s Prognosis: Pretty Good

July 20th vs. the Atlanta Braves


Today's Game Rating:
5 STARS
Boffo performances by two leading men, Jake Peavy and Alex Rios, with a great supporting cast of Josh Phegley and Alejandro De Aza.

Short Take:Jake Peavy pitched his first game after the DL, beating the Braves 10-6 with the help of Alex Rios and his grand-slammin’ 5 RBIs.

I have to admit that at this point in the season my expectations for the White Sox aren't very high. They've bobbled, whiffed, and choked their way through the first half and like everybody else, I've grown weary of their act. The trade deadline can't come soon enough, I say.

But as Michael Corleone said, "Just when I thought I was out, they pull me back in." The Sox beat the NL East first-place Atlanta Braves 10-6 on a sunny Saturday afternoon on the South Side, looking for all the world like a major-league ball team. Solid pitching, timely hitting, (mostly) smart fielding -- who are you guys and what have you done with the White Sox?

The story here is Jake Peavy. This was his first start since coming off the disabled list with a broken rib. You wouldn't know he'd had an injury if you watched him pitch. With fastballs a-hummin' and breaking balls a-breakin', he looked good. He gave up four runs in six innings of work, only two of which were earned. His one real mistake was a 3-1 fastball that Dan Uggla hit for a two-run homer in the second inning, which might not have happened at all if Brent Morel's error hadn't allowed Freddie Freeman to reach first two outs earlier. The runs are unearned, but they count just the same.

The Atlantans got two more off Peavy in the third via three singles and a sacrifice fly. That raised the tote board to 4-0 for our southern guests. This is where the cynicism born of low expectations caused me to shake my head in resignation as I expected another spiritless loss.

But soft! What light through yonder scoreboard breaks? The Sox came up in the third with a double by Phegley, a walk by Morel, singles by De Aza and Ramirez, resulting in one run and the bases loaded for Alex Rios. The same Alex Rios who was benched the night before for not running out a ground ball. The same Alex Rios whose average has dropped steadily in recent weeks. This same Rios hit Paul Maholm's first pitch into left-center for a grand slam and a Sox lead of 5-4.

Then, remarkably, the Sox came back in the fourth with four more runs. Phegley led off with a double and was singled home by Morel. Rios singled Morel home after he'd gone to third on Alexei Ramirez's fielder's choice. Jeff Keppinger later singled home Ramirez and Rios to make it 9-4. This is rarefied air for us after a half-season of paint-drying inaction.

The lead held and was enhanced in the seventh when Phegley singled home Blake Tekotte, who was pinch-running for Dayan Viciedo. Buddy, that's a big 10-4.

But the Braves didn't make it to first place by giving up. Ramon Troncoso came in to pitch the top of the eighth and gave up a single to Chris Johnson. Donnie Veal relieved Troncoso, and though his fastballs were unhittable, he threw a breaking ball to Freddie Freeman that went out for a two-run homer. Too bad, really, because Veal actally looked sharp out there. 10-6 after eight innings and we're still nervous because we've been burned before.

Addison Reed pitched the ninth and though he gave up a single, he struck out the side to end the game. Peavy gets the win, and the day ends happily with -- dare we say it? -- higher expectations. We've got nowhere else to go but up, so let's take the expectations up a notch.

WSI's
Hawk and Stoney's Thumb Guide:
Two Thumbs Up! "Hawk, we'd have to say that Alex Rios is hitting well."
"You know, Stoney, I knew a player who had five RBIs in a game in 1965."
"Let me guess, Hawk. Was it --"
"It was! YAZ! Who else?"


submitted by tebman.

Sox Clubhouse "Pick to Click" Winner

Alex Rios

Five big RBIs, including a grand slam that gave the Sox the lead. Took some of the shine off Peavy's return, but I don't think he minds.

Play WSI's Pick to Click Contest!

 

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