The White Sox Offense Continues To Struggle
An unhappy Robin Ventura speaks to the press after today’s 8-3 loss.
After an RBI single by Adam Dunn and a two-run homer by Paul Konerko within the first three innings, it looked like the White Sox would be in good shape with a 3-0 lead. Unfortunately it was all the Sox could come up with as Dunn would finish the game with a fly out and two walks. While Konerko would finish with two strikeouts, and the Sox would only get two base runners for the remainder of the game.
Tampa Bay on the other hand got plenty of production from their lineup. The top five hitters in their batting order finished the game hitting a combined 6-for-12 with 5 RBI’s, and putting Sox pitchers Dylan Axelrod and Nate Jones out of their misery. Not helping matters was the Sox pitching staff as a whole walking six batters, combined with a crucial fielding error by Alex Rios in the top of the eighth inning.
The White Sox as a team today finished the game batting 6-for-26 with 12 strikeouts and stranding five base runners. The Rays as a team went 10-for-35 with two home runs, and with six of their eight total runs coming in the last four innings. Despite a six inning, three run, and three strikeout game by Dylan Axelrod, Nate Jones wound up taking the loss for the White Sox when he gave up three runs with game tied at three in the top of the sixth inning.
Being down 6-3 in the eighth inning is still a reasonable deficit. Especially when Matt Thornton and Jesse Crain relieved Jones and didn’t allow a single base runner in between them. But with the Sox offense going 0-for-5 in the final two innings, and with the Rays able to get two more insurance runs in the top of the ninth off of Sox reliever Duente Heath, this one was pretty much over.
The 22,677 fans started leaving U.S. Cellular Field after Heath had given up those runs with nobody out. Overall it was just another bad day at the office for the South Siders. After the game a frustrated Robin Ventura told the media “We had it early on but we let it get away from us. We stopped hitting, and it eventually caught up to our pitching staff.”
When asked if the string of injuries on this roster have played a part in the teams recent slump Ventura said, “Injuries are gonna happen. We can’t worry about who’s not here. We can only worry about who’s here and who’s available and that is what we have to work with.” It must be noted that the White Sox do have some good news on the injury front in the case of pitcher John Danks.
It was announced that Danks would make his first rehab start of 2013 on May 2nd for the White Sox AA team the Birmingham Barons. However, there is still no timetable as to when Danks will return to the Sox rotation. But for the moment, the White Sox have now lost back-to-back games and are 3-6 in their last nine. They are currently being outscored 31-24 in this stretch.
It only continues to get difficult as the Sox will hit the road for an eight game road trip in which they’ll pay visits to the Rangers, Royals, and the Mets before returning home to begin a three game set with Anaheim on May 10th. Here is the box score from today’s game:
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