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Barely Afloat: Yankees vs White Sox, Game 1

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Mario Scalise

It's been an odd stretch for the White Sox these past two weeks. There's been exciting: Mark Buehrle perfect game, followed by a record 45 straight retired; Gordon Beckham proving on a daily basis how special of a player he can be; Clayton Richard throwing back-to-back 8-inning, 1-run outings. But none of it has helped much in the win column.

The depressing has taken over: losing 3-of-4 to the first place; getting swept by the third-place (and now second place) Twins; and continuing their collective struggles both on defense and in the pen; bickering between Pierzynski and Ramirez; Bartolo Colon not disclosing an elbow injury. And now ... they get to play the Yankees in a four-game series. Yikes.

You have to go back to 2005 for the last time the Sox didn't go .500 head-to-head with the Yankees, and all the way back to 2003 for when the last time they've actually won the season series. Since 2003, the White Sox are 14-22 against the Yankees, who currently sit atop all of baseball, tied with the Dodgers, for the best record.

Fortunately for the White Sox, there is the saying, "your only as good as your next day's starter." That should give the Sox hope, because with how ugly things have been for them lately, their rotation has continued to be a bright spot.

Probable Pitchers: Andy Pettitte (8-6, 4.67 ERA) vs Gavin Floyd (8-6, 4.24 ERA)

White Sox Lineup

#1 - Mark Kotsay, CF

#2 - Gordon Beckham, 3B

#3 - Jermaine Dye, RF

#4 - Jim Thome, DH

#5 - Paul Konerko, 1B

#6 - AJ Pierzynski, C

#7 - Carlos Quentin, LF

#8 - Chris Getz, 2B

#9 - Jayson Nix, SS

Yankees Lineup

#1 - Derek Jeter, SS

#2 - Johnny Damon, LF

#3 - Mark Teixeira, 1B

#4 - Alex Rodriguez, 3B

#5 - Hideki Matsui, DH

#6 - Nick Swisher, RF

#7 - Robinson Cano, 2B

#8 - Melky Cabrera, CF

#9 - Jose Molina, C

Tonight's game thread starts here.

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110 Comments

Jason Gage said:

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Really a huge game for the Sox. They are back in Chicago and out of the Twinkie dome and really need to make a statement tonight!!!

Mario Scalise said:

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A loss puts them under .500 ... how odd would it be for a team to be under .500 and then pull off a big trade at the deadline that has them as the BUYERS.

Jason Gage said:

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The Sox are lucky. Ultimately we aren't that different than the Jays and they are potentially selling with us as the buyers. It is the joys of being outside of the AL East.

Mario Scalise said:

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I just realized that this is the return of Nick Swisher. I'm sure he'll be receiving a standing ovation.

Jason Gage said:

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Haha, I'll be the first one to line up and give him a standing Ovation. It'll be in honor of him not being on the White Sox. I don't care that we got garbage, the Sox also got money and they used that on Viciedo.

Mario Scalise said:

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Since you put it that way, I love Nick Swisher ... in a Yankees uniform.

Heads22 said:

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Awesome, rain.

Followed with MacDougal. Ew.

Mario Scalise said:

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So it's Mark Buehrle day in Illinois, and for a rain delay they show Mike MacDougal in a game from 2007. Sox fans don't want to remember Mike MacDougal, or 2007.

Mario Scalise said:

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There is no rain, yet there is a rain delay. huh.

Mario Scalise said:

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I think I know why they are showing this 07 game. Josh Fields has two hits (doubles) and just beat out an infield single. Clearly hoping scouts are watching.

Mario Scalise said:

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Still in a rain delay. Not raining, looks like it may, radar looks fine.

JimH. said:

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Rained out here in the far west suburbs but it's as clear as can be now. It didn't even rain hard, not sure what the deal is there.

Jason Gage said:

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Interesting. Since I'm stuck at work, have they given an estimate on the rain delay? Also, Jim, I saw your comment and will get that post cleaned up.

Mario Scalise said:

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Game should be starting in 5-10 minutes.

Mario Scalise said:

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I know. I am literally within walking distance of the park and while it is really dark, it hasn't rained much. I guess they are playing it safe, but the radar looks fine. Who knows. BTW, Darin Erstad! Andy Gonzalez! 2007!

Mario Scalise said:

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The game will now start at 8:15. They are taking the tarp off now.

Heads22 said:

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This replay makes me want to ga-vomit.

Mario Scalise said:

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Not sure why they are showing this game. Not that I know what happens off-hand (I blocked out much of 2007 from my memory bank, for obvious reasons). With it being Buehrle day, they should have showed his first no-hitter. Or just show last year's blackout game.

Jason Gage said:

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Sweet, time for a nice White Sox Winner!!!

Mario Scalise said:

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Game about to start.

Mario Scalise said:

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Just showed a stat ... since May 8, Yanks and Angels have the best records in baseball. This will be a rough stretch. They get through this, that's some good momentum.

Mario Scalise said:

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Jeter with a first-pitch chopper up the middle. Nice play by Nix to throw him out.

Mario Scalise said:

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Five-pitch walk to Damon. Nothing really close. Neither was the first pitch to Jeter.

Mario Scalise said:

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Breaks Teixiera's bat for a flyout. Pitch got too much of the plate. An out is an out though. Arod then hits a first-pitch groundout to Beckham for a forceout at second. Floyd not locating too well, but got some help. Could be the rain delay.

Mario Scalise said:

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Kotsay grounds out softly to third on 2-2 count.

Mario Scalise said:

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Beckham takes a low fastball to right. Easy flyout. Two outs. Dye up.

Mario Scalise said:

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Dye rolls over a 2-2 outside slider to third for a groundout.

Mario Scalise said:

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Top of Second Inning
Matsui strikes out on a check swing. Floyd looking better.

Mario Scalise said:

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Swisher retired on a high curveball. Swisher doesn't swing. Amazing.

Jason Gage said:

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Same old Swisher.

Mario Scalise said:

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Cano grounds out to Beckham, who ranged a decent distance towards short to get it. Inning over. Floyd looking better.

Mario Scalise said:

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Bottom to Second Inning
Thome works count to 3-2 before grounding out to second/right field.

Jason Gage said:

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Come on Sox, lets get some offense. It is good to see Thome back in the lineup though. Was there any reason given for why he didn't play against Minnesota (or am I mistaken and he played?)

Mario Scalise said:

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Pettitte receives two courtesy strikes after falling behind 1-0 on Konerko that appeared low and away. Konerko gets count to 3-2 and takes an outside fastball to right for a single.

Jason Gage said:

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Konerko is having a great season.

Mario Scalise said:

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Man on first, one out, Pierzynski fouls off first three pitches, strikes out on fourth pitch in the dirt.

Mario Scalise said:

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Konerko on first, two outs, Quentin takes outside fastball for a strike. Plate may be a little wide right now. Down in the count 1-2, Quentin strikes out swinging. Inning over. No score.

Mario Scalise said:

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Top of Third
Melky Cabrera leads off with double to right-center.

Molina hits next pitch on the ground to Beckham. Batter out. Runner doesn't advance.

Mario Scalise said:

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Jeter up, one out, Cabrera on second. Jeter hits low curve to short for a soft groundout. Cabrera advances to third. Two outs.

Mario Scalise said:

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Floyd falls behind 3-1 to Damon, and then Damon swings at ball four and hits a really slow grounder just to the right of Floyd and Beckham, again ranging far to his left, gets Damon out at first by a step and a half. Nice play. No score.

Mario Scalise said:

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Bottom of the third
Pettitte getting a pretty nice strike zone (low and low and away). Getz falls behind 1-2. Hits a sharp single to right on a slider.

Mario Scalise said:

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Getz on first, no outs, Nix up. Pettitte throwing over to Getz. Sox try hit and run on 0-1 pitch. Nix fouls pitch off.

Mario Scalise said:

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Nix turns on an inside fastball foul down the left field line. Strikes out swinging on offspeed next pitch.

Mario Scalise said:

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Kotsay hits routine fly to right. Two outs, Getz still on first. Beckham up.

Mario Scalise said:

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Beckham hits BULLET down the line to left for an RBI-double. Ball was smoked. 1-0 Sox.

Heads22 said:

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Bacon makes everything better.

Mario Scalise said:

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He's so damn impressive.

Mario Scalise said:

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Not even a fan of the bat wrap, but it works for him.

Mario Scalise said:

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Getz was running on that last hit. Being aggressive despite Pettitte being on the mound. I like it.

Mario Scalise said:

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Dye flies out to left on changeup. Inning over. Sox up 1-0.

Mario Scalise said:

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Teixiera strikes out looking on curve. Nice curve. One out.

Mario Scalise said:

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TEIXEIRA ... his last name is so hard for me to remember how to spell. I have four games to learn.

Mario Scalise said:

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Rodriguez strikes out looking on outside corner strike. Prob a ball, but tonight's zone hasn't been small. Mats

Mario Scalise said:

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Matsui flies out to straight away center. Inning over.

MDSOXFANLC said:

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I don't usually follow your games, but I am "watching" tonight via MLB.com, using game day live rather than a broadcast, so I am judging balls and strikes using the little box in the diagram. I have noticed than Andy Pettitte's pitches are being called strikes if they are thrown somewhere within the city limits of Chicago. Gavin Floyd's have to be completely inside the little box to be called strikes. Does it look that way to those of you who can watch the game live?

Mario Scalise said:

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And THANKS FOR FOLLOWING! This is only day #2 on the gamethread front.

Mario Scalise said:

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Pettitte's zone has been bigger low and low and outside. Floyd's expanded a bit last inning.

Mario Scalise said:

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Not a fan of the outside strike, but I do appreciate a bigger zone to help out pitchers.

Mario Scalise said:

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Bottom of the fourth
Thome strikes out looking.

Mario Scalise said:

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Konerko strikes out on a 3-2 pitch in the dirt. Two outs. Pierzynski up.

Mario Scalise said:

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Pierzynski has seen 6 pitches so far in the game and has swung at every one of them, most of them not particularly good ones.

Mario Scalise said:

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He flied out by the way to right. Inning over. Sox still up 1-0.

Mario Scalise said:

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Top of fifth inning
Swisher leading off. Strikes out LOOKING again on back-door curve. Pitch was probably outside, but he's been calling outside all game, so no reason to complain. One out.

Mario Scalise said:

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Cano up. Low and inside fastball breaks his bat, soft roller to second. Two outs.

Mario Scalise said:

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Two outs, Cabrera flies out to center on fastball that got just in enough. Floyd looking good after sketchy (although quick) first. Inning over. Sox up 1-0.

Mario Scalise said:

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Bottom of fifth inning
Quentin leading off. Hits soft lineout to third. One out.

Mario Scalise said:

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Getz up. Down 0-2 on two close pitches up and inside. Strikes out on check swing. He didn't swing, but it was close enough. Jayson Nix grounds out to third to end inning. Aside from Beckham and Cabrera's doubles and a couple foul balls, no batter on either side has been able to center Pettitte and Floyd. Umpire Ted Barrett has something to do with, but both guys are throwing well.

Mario Scalise said:

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Top of sixth inning
Molina with a leadoff ground-rule double to left-center. Looked like a hanging breaking ball or poorly located changeup. Man on second. Jeter up.

Mario Scalise said:

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Jeter lines out to right. Ball was hit hard, but right to Dye. Molina stays at second. One out.

Mario Scalise said:

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Molina on second, one out, Damon up. RBI-single to right for Damon. Dye tries to throw out Molina at home (he had no chance), Konerko cuts it off but Damon gets into second. One out.

Mario Scalise said:

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Teixeira strikes out looking on low fastball. Two outs. Damon still on second.

Mario Scalise said:

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Arod strikes out again. Inning over. Game tied 1-1.

Mario Scalise said:

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Floyd hit a little lull that inning in at bats to Molina, Jeter and Damon, but got back on track against Teixeira and Rodriguez. Floyd through six inning with less than 80 pitches.

Mario Scalise said:

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Bottom of the sixth
Kotsay strikes out to start off inning. He's been overmatched by Pettitte.

Mario Scalise said:

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Beckham knocks single past Rodriguez for second hit of the night (fourth for Sox). Dye up.

Mario Scalise said:

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Dye hits outside fastball to second for an easy double play. Inning over.

Mario Scalise said:

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Top of seventh
Matsui leading off. Easy flyout to left. Pitching duels are fun to watch, hard to discuss.

Mario Scalise said:

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Swisher up, and again is taking close two-strike pitches. This time for two balls. And then swings low and in that he had no chance of hitting. How he is playing for baseball's best team is astonishing.

Mario Scalise said:

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Cano grounds out (wait for it) SOFTLY to third. Inning over. Game still tied 1-1.

Mario Scalise said:

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Perhaps I'm just slow to notice this, but Beckham really likes to gives that line to the batter, which is odd seeing how his backhand at third has been one of his weak spots. Maybe he really wants to play short and is slowly nudging his way there, hoping Guillen doesn't notice.

Mario Scalise said:

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Bottom of the seventh
Odd play. Jim Thome half-swings a bouncer down the line to first base. Pettitte, going after the ball, just falls, allowing Thome to reach.

Mario Scalise said:

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Konerko strikes out swinging. One out.

Mario Scalise said:

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Pierzynski finally takes a pitch! Two pitches later, hits one off Rodriguez's glove at third. Ball wasn't hit very hard. Rodriguez, going to his left, just missed it. Everyone safe. One out. Pitching change.

Mario Scalise said:

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Very good thing Pettitte is old and can't go very long anymore. Sox had little chance aside from Beckham.

Mario Scalise said:

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Phil Hughes is on the mound for the Yanks. Quentin up.

Mario Scalise said:

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Quentin fouls off 1-0 pitch. Like early in the season, he seems to be a hair off on every swing, which is no longer promising after a while.

Mario Scalise said:

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Uh, thank you Yankees defense. Pettitte's error starts the inning, Arods error continues it, and Quentin just hit a routine double-play grounder to Arod, and Cano throws the ball away trying to get the second out at first. Pierzynski gets credit for the assist with a high slide. Thome scores.

Mario Scalise said:

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Getz ends inning with flyout down the left field line. Inning over. Sox up 2-1.

Mario Scalise said:

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Back to that inning, Quentin fouled off about 2-3 pitches that 2008 Quentin would have hit VERY hard somewhere between the foul polls.

Mario Scalise said:

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Wise in the game, taking over for Quentin in left.

Mario Scalise said:

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Cabrera strikes out looking on backdoor breaking ball. Why are players still questioning Barrett. He's been consistent with the outside part of the plate all night.

Mario Scalise said:

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One out in the top of the eighth, Floyd has 9 Ks and 89 pitches.

Mario Scalise said:

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Check that - 101, two outs, 10 Ks. Another backdoor curve to strikeout Molina.

Mario Scalise said:

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Jeter takes fastball to right for a single. A sliding Dye catches it on a shorthop. Floyd's night is done. Thornton coming in.

Mario Scalise said:

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Not sure why Floyd is being pulled. Still looked good and gave up a hit to right to Jeter, who has made a career doing that to a lot of pitchers. Pitch counts are important.

Mario Scalise said:

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And Damon slaps an outside fastball to left for a single, past a diving Beckham, who again was playing WAY off the line.

Mario Scalise said:

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You have Matt Thornton, who throws hard, and Damon, who slaps the ball. You call an outside fastball and you have your thirdbaseman play off the line? Bad. Fortunately, Thornton strikes out Teixeira on two fastballs and a slider. Inning over. No damage.

Mario Scalise said:

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Bottom of the eighth
Nix pops out in foul territory to Posada, who replaced Molina. One out.

Mario Scalise said:

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Kotsay gives the ball a ride near the warning track in center, but an out. Two outs. Beckham up.

Mario Scalise said:

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Jenks isn't warming up, which means it's Thornton's game to finish. I like it. Beckham strikes out to end the inning. Going to the ninth, 2-1 Sox.

Mario Scalise said:

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Top of the ninth
Rodriguez strikes out. He had no chance against Thornton.

Mario Scalise said:

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Wow. Matsui gone on three straight pitches for the strikeout, and then Nick Swisher hits a game-tying homer. Ouch.

Mario Scalise said:

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That pitch to Swisher was too good, then again, he didn't swing at anything near the zone all night. Go figure. Cano strikes out to end inning.

Mario Scalise said:

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Thornton really made one mistake, so not to point fingers, but if Floyd is left in the game, while he may not have been able to finish the game, he would have had a chance, and if not, Thornton comes in to face 1-2 guys instead of 4. Again, pitch counts matter ... for some stupid reason.

Mario Scalise said:

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Bottom of the ninth
Dye pops up to Posada behind the plate. One out. Thome up.

Mario Scalise said:

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Single up the middle for Thome. Podsednik in as pinch-runner. Getting interesting.

Mario Scalise said:

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Hard hit single to left for Konerko. First and second. One out. Pitching change.

Mario Scalise said:

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Pierzynski flies out to shallow center. Nobody advances. Two outs. DeWayne Wise up.

Mario Scalise said:

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GAME OVER! Wise rips a single up the middle to score Podsednik.

Jason Gage said:

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Beautiful!!!

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