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WSI News - Totally Biased Game Recaps

Sox HRs Sting the Rays

June 6th, 2017 at Tampa Bay Rays

Sox Office Smash Hit:
Pumping Iron
Sox flex muscles with 3HRs

Short Take:  Sox snap losing skid on the strength of 3HRs and some solid pitching.

After an ugly and sloppy series in Detroit, the Sox were looking to get back on track in St. Petersburg against the Rays in game 4 of this 10 game road trip. Jose Quintana was solid, the team got some timely HRs, and the Sox did indeed right the ship with a 4-2 win in Game 1 at Tropicana Field.  

Yolmer Sanchez got the White Sox off to a healthy start against Chris Archer hitting an odd solo HR to CF to lead off the game in the Top of the 1st. The ball was hit very hard and appeared to be slicing to the left of the sure handed Kevin Kiermaier. However, it banged off either the catwalk or a support cable and due to the quirky ground rules of this park, it was ruled a HR even after a Rays video review. It was tough to tell what it collided with as WGN only had the behind home plate camera but regardless, it was a HR. The Rays would unfortunately answer back in the bottom of the 1st as Evan Longoria drove in Corey Dickerson on a blooper hit to RF off of a Jose Quintana curveball that probably caught too much of the plate.  

Dueling aces Chris Archer and Jose Quintana kept both offenses in check for a large chunk of this game after the 1st. Quintana got himself into a bases loaded 1 out jam in the bottom of the 6th before yielding to Chris Beck. After a 3-0 count with the sacks filled with Rays, Beck rallied to induce an inning ending double play ball. This really ended up being the biggest play of the game. I have to admit, the way things had been going for the Sox lately, I was fully expecting either the bases loaded walk or the bases clearing double. Beck didn't exactly instill confidence on the first three pitches as they were nowhere near the zone. To his credit, Beck "cinched it up" and pitched out of extreme danger. After this key momentum swing, Avisail Garcia rewarded Chris Beck for his heroics and crushed a mammoth HR to deep LF giving the Sox a 2-1 advantage. It's an absolute pleasure to see Avi Garcia prove everyone wrong and continue his breakout All-Star campaign. It's June and he is showing no signs that this is merely a fluke start.

Jose Abreu added an insurance run in the Top of the 8th by lacing a 2 strike pitch into RF making it 3-1 good guys. This proved important at the time because Tommy Kahnle gave up a run in the bottom of the inning but wriggled out of the jam with the lead intact. Kahnle was also the victim of a couple missed strike calls that same inning but managed to pitch around them. Todd Frazier lead off the Top of the 9th and vaporized a baseball over the CF wall putting the Sox up 4-2. David Robertson recorded a 1-2-3 inning to notch his ninth save of the season as the Sox finally got back in the win column.

There was a lot to like about this game. Jose Quintana didn't have a dominant outing but it was rock solid and light years better than his previous two starts. He likely would have gone deeper into the game if not for a Tim Anderson error that made Q throw about a dozen more pitches than he should have to get out of the inning. Throw in some solid bullpen work and some clutch HRs, and this game helped removed some of the stench from the weekend in Detroit. I don't expect the rebuilding Sox to contend this year but I think most fans can agree we expect to compete better than what we saw in Detroit. Tonight's win in St. Pete was a nice step towards putting that series in the rear view mirror. The Sox look to take the series from the Rays tomorrow as Mike Pelfrey takes on Jacob Faria.

Game Notes-

-Avisail Garcia was 2 for 4, 1HR, 1RBI. He now has 9HRs, 39RBIs, and an OPS of .902

-Jose Quintana pitched 5.1 innings, allowed 4H, 1R, 1ER, 4BBs, 7Ks. A solid effort.

-Carlos Rodon made his first rehab start in Class A Winston Salem today.

-The Rays left 11 men on base tonight.

 That's more like it.

submitted by Foulke You.

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Yolmer Sanchez

Solo HR in the 1st

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