Worst Sox loss of the year? If not, it's pretty close

Worst Sox loss of the year? If not, it's pretty close
Dan Johnson disputes the called third strike to end the game, but it's ovah.

It's getting harder and harder to watch the White Sox play the Royals. If it's not Bruce Chen, it's Billy Butler, if it's not Jeff Franceour or Alex Gordon, it's (gulp) Lorenzo Cain. K.C. keeps pushing and pushing, like they did in the demoralizing 7-5 defeat last night. A night that was only brightened a bit hours later when the Angels squeaked by the Tigers.

I need to get some things off my chest:

Maddening Part I: Watching Francisco Liriano, the possessor of electric stuff, struggle with his control is maddening. If the Sox don't win the divison, "walks" by their pitchers will be at the top of the list as to why. Liriano issued seven bases on balls in his last start and his two walks (four overall along with two homers) in the sixth inning last night both scored, to give K.C. a 5-3 lead.

Maddening Part II: After a Paul Konerko single scored Alejandro De Aza, the Sox had the bases loaded and one out in the first inning. A.J. Pierzynski popped out and Dayan Viciedo grounded into a force out.

Maddening Part III: The Sox take an early 1-0 lead and the Royals come right back off of Liriano as Salvador Perez smashes a two-run, line drive homer to left in the top of the second.

Maddening Part IV: Dewayne Wise leads off the third with triple. He's stranded as Konerko flied out to right and Alex Rios popped to second baseman to Johnny Giavotella in short right while Wise was gunned down at the plate for a double play.

Maddening Part V: After tying the score at two with an A.J. leadoff homer in the fourth, the Sox had men on first and second with two out. Jose Lopez, replacing Kevin Youkilis who left the team to be with his expectant wife (Tom Brady's sister, by the way) struck out.

Maddening Part VI: In the bottom of the eighth, with a chance to take the lead, the Sox fail with runners on second and third and one out. Gordon Beckman struck out and after an intentional walk to De Aza, Lopez popped out. A question and two comments: Why didn't lefthanded hitter Dan Johnson bat for either Beckham or Lopez with ducks on the pond?  It's true Johnson struck out to end the game, but he was the guy to hit in that situation. And there's no doubt that Youkilis should be with his wife. No argument there. But I hope he's coming home in a hurry. A little bit of Lopez goes a long way.

Maddening Part VII: The failures of Liriano and the offense came back to haunt us in the top of the ninth as a lately-less-than-dependable Addison Reed coughed up a single and the two-run, game-winning homer to Cain (his second of the night).  The Sox brought the tying run to the plate with two outs in the ninth in the person of Johnson, but nada. Note to Robin: Brett Myers needs to start closing--NOW.

We've now lost six in a row to the Royals, a bit inexplicable in that they're 12 1/2 games behind the Sox in the A.L. Central standings and 14 games under .500. Guess that's baseball.

Sox Notes of Note: Being a glass half-full White Sox fan/blogger, here are some Sox highlights: Both Wise and Pierzynski went 2 for 4 with a homer; Alexei Ramirez  went 2 for three with a double, homer and two RBIs, Konerko had two singles and an RBI and De Aza went 2 for 3.

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