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WSI News - Totally Biased Game Recaps

Stopper for Sale: Sox Avoid Sweep in KC

April 6 at Kansas City

Daily Sox Crop Report: Seeing some growth. Maybe some of that fertilizer Hahn spread in the offseason is starting to kick in?

Short Take:  Shields is tough, but Sale shuts down Royals; Sox get to Royals bullpen in the 9th and win 5-1

What looked like a game that was going to be a nail-biter an old-fashioned pitching duel, perhaps a 1-0 complete-game-win by Chris Sale completely fell apart in the ninth inning. And for once, dear White Sox fans, the implosion was on the other side of the field.

A rarely seen, previously endangered species called a "White Sox Run Explosion" (also known by its more common name: "Run Support for Chris Sale") made an appearance in the top of the ninth inning. The Sox scored four runs off a Royal reliever, giving Sale a comfortable cushion that allowed him to take a seat for the end of the game.

Royals starter James Shields' line of seven innings, five hits, one run, six strikeouts and no walks was superb. He gave most of the White Sox fits, except for Conor Gillaspie, who doubled off him twice. Gillaspie's second double in the seventh led to the Sox's first run, when an Alexei Ramirez single brought Gillaspie home to give the Sox the 1-0 lead.

Chris Sale was his normal spectacular stopper self. He pitched eight innings, allowed no runs on four hits, struck out six and walked one. Considering the lack of effective bullpen arms lately, it appeared that he was ready to finish out the game until the Sox padded the lead in the top of the ninth.

Facing Royals LHP Tim Collins in the top of the ninth, Adam Dunn started off the inning by squeaking a single through the shift. Dayan Viciedo walked, but it was followed by a pop-up botched bunt by Gillapsie. With Avi Garcia batting, Leury Garcia (pinch running for Dunn) took off for third base and forced a terrible throw by Royals catcher Salvador Perez. Garcia scored and Viciedo advanced to second. Righty Franciscley Bueno was brought in to face Ramirez. Alexei promptly doubled down the third base line, allowing another run to score. Then Tyler Flowers continued his hot hitting (who is that masked man?), garnering two RBIs by singling up the middle.

The Sox went into the bottom of the ninth with a 5-0 lead. Despite the non-close situation, Robin called on Matt Lindstrom to finish the game. Lindstrom made it interesting, giving up three singles, and he was not helped by a Jose Abreu dropped throw at first on a double play ball. The Royals scraped out a run, but then a nifty double play turned by Gillapsie-Ramirez-Abreu finished off the Royals and the game ended with a 5-1 Sox win.

With this win, the Sox avoided a sweep by the Royals and their record goes to 3-3. And yeah, it's early, but it's nice to watch a game and feel like this White Sox team has a chance. Personally, I think this is a promising start to a fun season.

Of note:

  • This game had two instances of replay review, both of which were on close calls for outs at first base - and both of which ended in the Royals' favor.
  • Avi Garcia made a great catch on an Alex Gordon fly ball, resulting in a rather spectacular face plant. He stayed down for a while but stayed in the game.
  • Jose Abreu got drilled in the elbow in the top of the sixth inning. Sale started off the bottom of the sixth with three increasingly inside pitches to Omar Infante, the last of which resulted in Infante nearly wetting his pants and a warning to both benches from the home plate ump. For the remainder of the inning, Sale looked like he had his jaw clenched shut, but he behaved himself.

The Sox head to Colorado to face the Rockies on Monday 4/7 at 7:40 PM CST. Felipe Paulino (0-0) is scheduled to face Jordan Lyles (1-0).

The Futures Market:
 I'd buy: Sox futures behind Chris Sale are so bright, we gotta wear shades.

submitted by ChiSoxGal85

Sox Clubhouse "Pick to Click" Winner

Chris Sale

"Thanks for the run support, boys...but I got this."

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