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WSI News - Totally Biased Game Recaps

The King is Dead! Long Live Chris Sale!

August 21 at Seattle

Sox Project Update:
One structural wall is definitely ready.
Project is running behind but still might make the due date.

Short Take: Chris Sale dominates for most of 7 innings and the offense goes for double digits as the Sox beat "King" Felix and his court.

After a mostly forgettable 2-week run against top of the conference opponents the Sox enter what should be the easiest final 6 weeks in Major League Baseball still within striking distance of a wildcard berth. The first game of that stretch was Friday night in Seattle. Chris Sale faced off against "King" Felix Hernandez in what looked like a pitchers duel and Chris Sale definitely lived up to his side of the bargain. The King on the other hand was pretty average or even downright bad by his standards giving up 4 runs over 6 innings. Once Felix departed the Sox offense came alive late to leave no doubt as they go on to win 11-4.

As with most Chris Sale starts the game really begins and ends with his performance. For the second straight game he was dominant for the first 6 innings and even had an outside chance at a complete game having thrown only 87 pitches at that point. He had also yielded only a single hit while striking out 11. Unfortunately in the 7th he had a bit of a let down while protecting a 4-run lead. He gave up back to back singles to start the inning before striking out Gutierrez. Unfortunately he then got behind Trumbo 2-0 and left a changeup up and out over the plate and Trumbo hammered into the right-centerfield bleachers to bring Seattle within one. Sale went on to K the final two batters he faced to bring his final total to fourteen but then took a seat on the bench hoping the Sox bullpen could protect the precarious lead.

Fortunately it never came to that because the hitters decided to take matters into their own hands against the shaky Seattle bullpen. Up to this point they had been pretty solid managing four runs and nine hits against a less than spectacular Hernandez. The seventh had come and gone with no additional runs scoring but in the eighth the offense came roaring back to life. Melky Cabrera led off with a single and Garcia lined a hard shot to third that was snagged with Melky just beating the relay throw back to first. LaRoche then laced a dipping liner to right which the outfielder misread and mistimed. The ball dove below his futile sliding effort at a catch and went all the way to the wall (the second time this game the Mariners made that mistake). When the ball finally made it's way back the infield Melky was standing at third and LaRoche was at second. Alexei Ramirez then worked a walk on a nice at bat that included 3 straight fouls with a full count before finally taking ball four to load the bases. The Mariners promptly changed pitchers but the new guy wasn't up to the task and promptly walked Sanchez on 5 pitches to force in a run. Tyler flowers naturally followed by promptly getting in the hole 1-2 before taking a couple of balls and then proceeding to foul off 4 straight pitches before finally taking ball four himself and force in another run. Rasmussen stayed in the game and after getting behind Eaton 2-0 struck him out looking. Up to the pate strode Tyler Saladino who laced the first pitch he saw into right for a single an an 8-3 lead and all but guarantee a White Sox winner. The Sox went on to add three more in the ninth with the bottom three in the lineup doing most of the damage again and send Sox fans giggling off to bed.

Zach Duke pitched a mostly routine final two innings, recording a double play and striking out a few guys while yielding a meaningless solo home run along the way. Good to get him some work I suppose and certainly with the development of Nate Jones Duke is less important than he was earlier in the year, but hopefully he can find the form he had earlier in the season and help the Sox hold some leads down the stretch. Saturday these two teams face off again with Carlos Rodon facing Vidal Nuno who has started a few games for the Mariners and had a solid season but got hit pretty hard his last time out. Game time is 8:10 in Chicago. Hopefully the offense can continue to take advantage because whatever these final 6+ weeks of the season will bring, now is the time to bring it.

Rebuilding Recap:
 Guys like Chris Sale make it easy to have hope that this rebuilding effort will bear fruit in the future.

submitted by voodoochile.

Sox Clubhouse "Pick to Click" Winner

Tyler Saladino

3/5 with a huge 2-RBI single in the 8th to end any doubt.

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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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