The Latest: Welcome Back, Big Guys; White Sox Fans, Meet Your New Bullpen; Tigers Bolster Division Bid

The Latest: Welcome Back, Big Guys; White Sox Fans, Meet Your New Bullpen; Tigers Bolster Division Bid

The latest from SoxWorld as the Pale Hose ends their five-game skid...

BIG BATS EXPLODE...FINALLY

Led by the 3-4-5 hitters and our pesky leadoff man, the Sox scored as many runs last night as they did in the entire Tiger series with the 7-4 victory over the Twins. Paul Konerko? 3 for 4 and a three-run homer. Adam Dunn? A two-run clout and no strikeouts. Alex Rios? A two-run blast. And setting the table was Alejandro De Aza, who went 3 for 4 with two runs scored. It's also important to note that all the damage was done against Francisco Liriano, who has always been tough on the White Sox, including a no-hitter, and actually suffered his first loss to the South Siders.

THE PEN

How Robin Ventura uses his bullpen, now that Brett Myers has been added and Jesse Crain reinstated from the DL, will be interesting to watch. Last night, Gavin Floyd survived six innings largely due to the five double plays turned behind him. He was far from perfect, but give him credit for muddling through despite walking six batters. Ventura then tabbed Matt Thornton for the seventh and brought in Crain for the eighth. Still a bit rusty from his layoff, Crain surrendered a home run to the first batter he faced (Ryan Doumit) and gave up an infield single to Alexei Casilla. Whether it was because of Crain being a bit shaky or a new philosophy, the skipper called on Myers to finish the inning--which he did by getting Sox-killer Jamey Carroll to line out to Rios in right. You might have been led to believe the Myers would also close it out in the ninth, but true to his word, Addison Reed is still the closer and shut the door on the Twins for his 16th save. Stay tuned.

WHAT ABOUT THAT TIGERS TRADE?

On the surface, of course, it appears that Detroit just got a whole lot stronger. Their trade with the Marlins brought them an excellent starter in Anibel Sanchez, who has had little run support in Miami, and an All-Star second baseman (2011) in Omar Infante, who returns to the Tigers. Now, with second base solved and a rotation of Justin Verlander, Doug Fister, Rick Porcello, Matt Scherzer and Sanchez, the pundits have their mouths wide open declaring the race is over. The truth is, the Tigers have been the pick to win all season, even as the Indians and Sox occupied first place, and they are playing their best ball now--without Sanchez and Infante. It doesn't seem like it's good news for the Sox, but if the "big guys" start hitting and the pen comes together...

 

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    Art Berke

    Art Berke, a lifelong White Sox fan, has worked at the highest levels of the sports industry with Major League Baseball, ABC Television and Sports Illustrated. He grew up in Northwest Indiana, in the shadow of old Comiskey Park, and proudly proclaims 2005 as the best year of his life. Art offers his glass half-full opinions and observations as he lives and dies with the Sox.

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