This was a back-and-forth game all night but based on the number of hits allowed by Wade Miley (13) it probably shouldn’t have been. Jose Quintana pitched well over six innings allowing three runs while striking out six batters. After his exitJake Petricka pitched the seventh and was credited with the win after Miley’s meltdown. David Robertson came in to shut the door in the ninth, striking out two and tossing a clean inning.
Top Play (WPA): Undoubtedly the biggest play of the night was the seventh-inning double by Trayce Thompson (.433). This play gave Thompson his third hit of the night and put him a homer shy of the cycle. Melky Cabrera and Avisail Garcia came in to score, giving the White Sox the 5-4 lead and ultimately the victory. After this debacle Alexi Ogando, who really should have been in the game earlier, came in to put an end to the bleeding.
Bottom Play (WPA): The bottom play of the night comes to us by way of the White Sox’s best player, Jose Abreu (-.114), who grounded into a double play with Adam Eaton headed to third base during the fifth inning. One positive take from the night was at least Abreu was held to just a lone single.
For the Red Sox the bottom play came from Josh Rutledge, who struck out vs. Quintana in the fifth inning with men on first and third (-.089).
Key Moment: The lead changed four times before Thompson sealed the deal with a double in the bottom on the seventh. Miley shouldn’t have been in a position to give up that double anyhow considering a meeting took place at the mound earlier in the inning with the Sox leading 4-2 and Miley sitting at 98 pitches. The 99th pitch was an RBI by Melky Cabrera and then things just unraveled. Someone should have been warm in the pen with a lead and Miley up against 100 pitches. This was a coaching mistake.
I understand that the bullpen is overworked with so many poor starts this season but with a chance to win a baseball game this mistake cannot be overlooked. Anytime you can get a lead and close to 100 pitches out of your starter you need to turn that over to your pen, especially when your starter is lucky to have gotten to that point.
Trend to Watch: Hanley Ramirez: first baseman? Four hours before the game today Ramirez was seen taking grounders at first accompanied by David Ortiz and Brian Butterfield. Twitter subsequently blew up with talk of this possible move. The decision was said to have come top-down from Dave Dombrowski and was discussed with John Farrell and Torey Lovullo.
To me the sooner that this switch can happen the better, any clarity we can have about Ramirez’s ability to play first base gives the Sox more information going into the off-season. He certainly would be hard pressed to perform worse than he has in left field.
Coming Next: The return of Rick Porcello. As if he didn’t need all the help he could get in any contest opposing him on the mound is Chris Sale. If there was ever a time to pick a night to go to the movies, tomorrow may be the night. The impending beatdown of Porcello may be “R” rated in its own right.
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