Sunday, May 22, 2022

How White Sox Failed Comeback Bid Sparked A Six Game Win Streak


On May 1st the Chicago White Sox looked dead in the water. After dropping 10 of their last 13 they were in danger of losing yet another game. The Angels had a 6-0 heading into the bottom of the ninth and the White Sox offense looked lifeless once again.

Then Jose Abreu lead off the inning with a single. Gavin Sheets and Leury Garcia joined the hit parade to plate two runs. Then Josh Harrison and Tim Anderson had back-to-back hits to bring the White Sox within two. Yasmani Grandal walked to load the bases and Jose Abreu got hit by a pitch to cut the deficit to within one.

The valiant comeback attempt would fall just short as the White Sox lost 6-5. But something changes that day. The five-run ninth inning gave the White Sox a confidence boost.

“That’s the team that we are,” Luis Robert told reporters after the loss through interpreter Billy Russo. “We were able to come back in the ninth and it was good for us. That’s the team from now on that everybody’s going to see, day in and day out.”

Something seemed to click after that. The next day the White Sox scored two runs in the first innings which turned out to be more than enough run support. Dylan Cease tossed the best game of his career. He struck out 11 batters and only allowed one hit over seven scoreless innings.

The White Sox took that momentum into the Crosstown Cup, sweeping the Cubs in two games. Once again the starting pitching was magnificent. Michael Kopech threw four scoreless and Tim Anderson hit an opposite-field home run in the rainy weather.

The next night Jose Abreu and Leury Garcia homered for the White Sox. The bullpen combined for 3.1 scoreless innings and Liam Hendriks locked down his third save in a row. After the game, Hendriks made an emotional Instagram post to dedicate the save to his grandfather who recently passed away.

The White Sox then went to Boston for a three-game series and took care of business. They won the first game 4-2 behind five strong Vince Velasquez innings. Luis Robert carried the bulk of the offensive load with a two-run homer over the Green Monster in the top of the third. Reese McGuire gave the White Sox a critical insurance run in the eighth inning before Hendriks slammed the door with authority, striking out the side.

In game two the White Sox showed their resiliency, staging a ninth-inning comeback and stealing the game from Boston. Jake Burger drew a leadoff walk in the top of the ninth. Adam Engel moved him to third base with a double down the line. Then Leury Garcia drove him in with a sac-fly to tie the game. Reynaldo Lopez threw two scoreless innings to help send the game to extras. This included escaping a jam in the bottom of the ninth with Red Sox runners on first and third. In the tenth inning, Jose Abreu hit an RBI double, then Luis Robert hit an RBI single to give the White Sox a 3-1 lead. Once again Liam Hendriks came in and logged the save.

The White Sox completed the sweep on Sunday. Dallas Keuchel put together a quality start, throwing six innings of two-run ball. Three runs in the third would be all the White Sox needed. Ryan Burr, Matt Foster, and Jose Ruiz built a bridge for Bennet Sousa to come in and record his first career save.

The sweep completed the White Sox’s five-game road trip undefeated. It marked the first time the White Sox had an unbeaten road trip of five games or more since 2000 and just the seventh time in team history.

“This team is too good and has too much talent to not get over slumps like what we had,” Bennet Sousa said. “that is how we are going to play.”

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