Jake Peavy allowed eight hits and three runs in the first three innings of the night against the Minnesota Twins. The first part of that sentence would make it sound like Jake got shelled, the last two words give away that something else was amiss.
Denard Span legitimately had Peavy's number, crushing two doubles deep to the wall. The rest of the damage was of a different variety:
- Ben Revere tried to bunt Denard Span over to 3rd base in the 1st inning, only for Peavy's inability to handle it to result in a single. A sac fly would give the Twins a 1-0 lead, though a well-turned double play prevented disaster.
- The problems caused by three singles from Plouffe, Dozier, and Carroll that got a combined five feet off of the ground, were exacerbated by the return of Alex Rios' throwing problems in Target Field, who airmailed the cutoff man to push the first of two runs in the inning across.
Peavy pitched around another Mauer infield single in the 3rd, but exhausted himself after six innings and 107 pitches worth of dealing with Twins dinks and dunks all over the diamond.
With the Sox down 3-0, Ventura went to his usual strategy of emptying out the back end of the pen. Hector Santiago couldn't throw strikes, and was further hampered by two soft singles, but Ben Revere's brain cramp attempt to score on a not-particularly wild pitch limited the damage to one run in the 7th.
If losing via soft singles and quirky defense feels illegitimate, then consider the outing of Francisco Liriano, who looked nearly his old self dominating the Sox for seven one-run innings. His control fell off in his final innings, but the Sox were not able to mount a significant rally beyond driving home Alex Rios after a leadoff double.
Twins 4, White Sox 1
Jake Peavy, 6 IP, 10 H, 3 ER, BB, 7 K, 107 pitches - Jake Peavy battled. He battled his tail off. You notice how you usually use the term 'battled' after a loss?
Alex Rios - 2 for 4, 2B, R, E - One of the few offensive stars, almost made up for his horrible throw in the 2nd with a running catch that nearly kickstarted a double play
Alexei Ramirez - 2 for 3, SF, RBI - The power is still sort of missing, but there's solid contact!
Kevin Youkilis - 1 for 4 - He saw the most pitches of anyone on the team, so there's that
Adam Dunn - 0 for 4, 4 K - He's streaking!
Alejandro De Aza - 0 for 4, K - As he goes...
Alexei Ramirez's sac fly was the only run of the game, but also probably the biggest missed opportunity. The White Sox had runners on the corners with one out in the 7th, which was the first time they put a runner in scoring position with less than two outs all night. Ramirez connected strong with a Liriano delivery left up, but has never been much for opposite field power, and his line drive settled harmlessly into Ben Revere's glove in right field.
Things Would Be Different If...
Things easily could have been a lot worse. The Twins stranded 13 runners on the night, including two double plays, and three strikeouts with runners in scoring position.
Another miserable offensive effort wastes another gem from Jake Peavy, which is supposed to be doubly problematic these days what with whatever's wrong with Gavin Floyd, and the presence of Dylan Axelrod in the rotation. Beckham and Ramirez's slow single-driven resurgencs don't do much to cover up slumps from Konerko, Dunn (who's on a severe K binge), and Viciedo.
Fortunately, because no one has any interest in winning the division, it's just another ho-hum day for a 1st place team.
Team Record: 38-35, .5 games up
Filed under: Instant Rationalization
Tags: Adam Dunn, Alejandro De Aza, Alex Rios, Alexei Ramirez, baseball, ben revere, brian dozier, Dayan Viciedo, denard span, dylan axelrod, Gavin Floyd, Gordon Beckham, Jake Peavy, jamey carrol, Joe Mauer, justin morneau, kevin youkilis, Minnesota Twins, Paul Konerko, trevor plouffe, White Sox