After the first inning, it looked like Jake Peavy and the Sox were in for another long day. It doesn’t help when you are facing one of the best pitchers in all of baseball in C.C. Sabathia. It also doesn’t help when you have Adam Dunn hitting cleanup in your lineup. It really doesn’t help when you run the bases like a little league team.
The White Sox have lost games this year in a lot of unique ways. Tonight was something I have yet to see: more than one base running blunders to end innings. Not once but twice the White Sox were caught off second base when a line drive was caught. That means with less than 2 outs the Sox had a man in scoring position, and blew the opportunity not because they couldn’t hit, but because they didn’t have their head in the game. Base running mistakes like that for a team that is struggling to score runs is simply unacceptable.
Not to mention, pitching after a start that Peavy got roughed up after passing the 75 pitch mark against the Tigers, many eyes were looking at him to see how he would pitch against the Yankees, and how he would pitch against Sabathia. After a tough first inning, Peavy gave up 2 runs. In his defense, I believe that if Paul Konerko were playing first base, he makes the plays that Dunn struggled with. Outside of those 2 runs, Peavy gave up a run on a double play. Overall, Peavy pitched fantastic, and silenced a lot of critics, at least until his next start.
If the White Sox want to still be relevant in this race, they need to play not only better baseball, but smarter baseball. There are only so much more time left where we can say that 4.5 games is still a manageable deficit to overcome. It’s true that the White Sox still have just under 2 months of baseball to play, but if they continue to play the way they have been, they will end up finishing the season about 4.5 games back, out of the playoffs.