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WSI News - Totally Biased Game Recaps

It's Logical: Shields Pitches, Sox Lose

July 7th vs. the Houston Astros

WSI Playdate Funtime:
Here's hoping the pitching staff finds one.

Short Take:The Sox lost to the Astros 12-6 behind the batting-practice pitching of James Shields and his bullpen backup singers.

A logic statement: James Shields pitched today; the White Sox lose when Shields pitches; therefore, the White Sox lost today.

That statement probably wouldn't hold up under a rigorous philosophical look, but it's close enough to our experience that we can say it with some confidence. The Sox lost to the Astros 12-6 behind the hit-me-please stylings of James Shields, who gave up eight earned runs through 10 hits in only 5-2/3 innings. Yeah, he struck out nine -- good for him. But when Houston wasn't striking out, they were hitting it, hard.

The bullpen went through the balance of the game giving up four more runs, all earned. Whatever it is the Sox pitchers are doing, they're not fooling anybody with a bat in their hands.

The Sox did score five runs off Houston starter Charlie Morton, which was unusual, as Morton's having a good year. With a passable pitching staff, the six runs scored by the South Siders should have been sufficient. But we're not talking about a passable pitching staff.

A couple years ago in the New York Times, John Branch wrote a piece titled, "The Mysteries of Pitching and All That 'Stuff'." It was a tongue-in-cheek essay searching for a definition of "stuff" as it applies to pitchers. He wrote that the word is both meaningful and meaningless, and talked to several current and retired pitchers and coaches, none of whom could give a real definition, or even a synonym. They know it when they see it.

I thought about that after reading Shields saying, "I feel really comfortable right now with my stuff and Iím just more confident in my ability to get hitters out," in a June 27 interview with Chris Kuc. This was part of a conversation about his trade value. Oddly, he may be more valuable to the Sox if he leaves. Maybe so -- he could take that stuff he's really comfortable with and try to define it somewhere else.

I was in a conversation with another frustrated Sox fan today and our thoughts turned toward the Rebuild (I think it deserves to be capitalized because of the mythic quality assigned to it). One day, we agreed, guys like Shields will be gone and others like Kopech and Hansen will be here, leading us to the far side of that championship rainbow. I used my favorite analogy of a construction site: ugly hole in the ground, building debris scattered about, stagnant water-filled puddles, rusty heavy equipment parked nearby. The promise is that when the project is completed, a gleaming structure built to last for generations will stand at that site, pleasing to the senses and productive in its use.

That's the promise of the White Sox in 2020. A healthy, self-perpetuating winning machine that will be competitive and fun to watch for generations to come. In the meantime we get to look at Shields and the Seven Dwarfs.

Bad pitching loses ballgames; the Sox have bad pitching, therefore, the Sox lose ballgames. Good pitching wins ballgames; the Sox will have good pitching in the future; therefore, the Sox will win ballgames in the future. It's logical, we hope.

Fun Da Mentalz:
The beatings will continue until morale improves.

submitted by tebman.

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Totally Biased Game Recaps

September 29... The Last (And Lost) Weekend

September 24... Covey Captivates, but Kluber Cruises

September 22... At Least They Won't Clinch Here

September 18...Klubered, but Not Clobbered

September 16... Baltimore Blanked

September 10... Thrown Away

September 8... Anaheim Annihilation

September 3... Power Special

September 1... 18 Strikeouts Later, the White Sox Lose

August 30...Leaky Bullpen Bombed by Boston

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