Hit Parade: White Sox clobber Cleveland, 8-3

Today’s lesson: We learned that Tim Anderson, José Abreu, Daniel Palka, and Welington Castillo, are in fact, NOT Beliebers.

Did I ever give you any indication that Tim Anderson is chasing a batting title?

No? Well, let me tell you about it. Tonight, after a spectacular 4-for-5 performance, Anderson’s batting average sits at a lofty .339, 11 points ahead of Yankees infielder DJ LeMahieu. Anderson’s four hits contributed to a 14-hit game for the Chicago White Sox, as they go up against all odds to get at Shane Bieber early, defeating the Cleveland Indians, 8-3.

The hit parade began nearly immediately when Leury García crushed a Bieber fastball to left field, on the second pitch.

Legends hit dingers — 380 ft. dingers, to be precise.

As if you thought the top of the lineup was finished; Anderson and José Abreu hit flashy back to back singles.

Bieber fell behind to Yoán Moncada almost immediately, and I know I talk a lot about how Moncada has Bieber’s number, but it’s important to point out that touting a 3-0 count after giving up three consecutive hits is a tell-tale sign … Bieber probably won’t have his best stuff tonight.

What do you mean? (These will be the only Justin Bieber references you’ll read tonight. Sorry.) Moncada grounded out, which advanced Anderson and Abreu. Zack Collins reached on a fielder’s choice, and WHEW, this error by Carlos Santana, lemme tell you –

“Santana threw it to Elk Grove Village!” – Jason Benetti

Timmy and José scored on the error – Sox strike in the first, and they struck hard, 3-0.

Ross Detwiler threw a few innings of solid ball. His control decided to show up tonight – and that’s evident with the 0 walks under his belt. Detwiler, in fact, didn’t let Cleveland score until the third inning; a leadoff single by apparent karaoke star Franmil Reyes is bookmarked by an incredible defensive play by Moncada.

oof, that cross into foul territory! fistbite dot gif.

Moncada robbed Roberto Perez of what could have been an extra base hit, but Michael Freeman singled after that play, scoring Reyes. Cleveland’s on the board now, but the Good Guys still lead, 3-1.

The Sox half of the third saw Tim Anderson with another gustatory leadoff single; José Abreu slapped a single to center field to follow. Yolmer Sánchez joins the hit party with another single, scoring Timmy, driving in Yolmer’s 42nd RBI. How about that? It’s 4-1, Sox.

While Big Boss Ross has a pretty tight lid on this Cleveland lineup, the Sox offense continued to produce. Daniel Palka – yes, that’s right, Daniel Palka – singled off Bieber. A single to center field by Tim Anderson advanced Palka to 2nd. (And for those of you keeping score at home, that’s TA’s third hit of the night.)

And I can tell you right now that if your number two and three hitters are both having multi-hit games – things are probably looking pretty swell. Abreu singled, scoring Palka, for Abreu’s American League-leading 122nd RBI of the season. 5-1, Sox.

In the fifth inning, Cleveland’s offense began to show finally show some fight. José Ramirez took Detwiler deep, and how.

Third homer in two days? I suppose that’s impressive.

Franmil Reyes must have been eager to fill out a song request slip, because he singled next. Roberto Perez singled too, moving Reyes to third. Freeman stopped the momentum by grounding out into a double play, but it scores Reyes anyway. 5-3, Sox.

Is it getting a little warm in here, or is it the karaoke fog machine?

The sixth inning brought Tim Anderson’s fourth hit of the night. Can we take a moment to appreciate the greatness, thanks to this montage put together by our friends over at baseball.theater?

We stan.

Moncada doubled, and Sanchez slapped a ground ball single.

But the White Sox are still hungry. And what do you do when you’re hungry?

Order the beef, of course.

Welington Castillo’s three run bomb put the Sox up, 8-3. You love to see it.

Some other tidbits from this game: Aaron Bummer got out of a jam in the seventh by making Francisco Lindor chase a naaaasty pitch.

I miss Lindor’s blue hair, to be quite honest, but I understand the maintenance is hard.

Lindor also falls victim in the ninth inning, when Alex Colome works out of a bases-loaded jam, notching the save:

Cleveland’s loss tonight further dims their playoff chances. with the Tampa Bay Rays beating the Yankees tonight, Cleveland’s now a game and a half back in their push for the AL Wild Card. Their elimination number is now at three.

We saw a solid start from Ross Detwiler. He threw five innings of ball, giving up three runs, all earned, off five hits. He walked none and struck out one. Big Boss Ross improves to 3-5.

Cleveland really needed Shane Bieber to show up tonight. I … almost feel bad. Bieber went 5 2/3rds, giving up five runs, three of them earned. He gave up 10 hits, which is a LOT for him. He struck out seven, as he is a strikeout pitcher, and walked one. His record falls to a still-respectable 15-8.

Other tidbits: Leury Garcia left the game in the fifth, due to an injured shoulder. Matt Skole also left today’s game with right abdominal tightness. Both are day-to-day, according to the White Sox Twitter account.

Also, the Minnesota Twins have clinched the AL Central. Good for them, or whatever.

The Milwaukee Brewers also punched their ticket to the postseason, and I might have had to re-watch a good portion of this game so I could celebrate my Yelich-less National League team appropriately. Both Steve Stone and Jason Benetti had cordial things to say about the Brew Crew’s September resurgence.

Tomorrow’s 7:10 CST game finds Dylan Cease (4-7, 5.79) taking the hill opposite Aaron Civale (3-3, 1.82). Catch this game televised on NBC Sports Chicago; the radio’s got you at WGN 720. For your SSHP coverage, Leigh Allan has your back.

If there’s one last thing to make you smile tonight, let it be this.

Gamethread: Cleveland at White Sox

So Majestic: This view is worth the trek to the 500 level. Man, I’m going to miss this place. (Clinton Cole / South Side Hit Pen)

Can we talk a little more about last night’s spectacular seventh inning alley-oop play between Yolmer Sanchez and Tim Anderson? Because that’s maybe one of the few noteworthy things from last night’s game, where the Cleveland [REDACTED]s certainly did not have a wayward early-inning slugfest, resulting in an 11-0 loss for the Chicago White Sox. 

Nope, that didn’t happen.

That play certainly did, though.

Just for the heck of it, with bonus Jimmy Biceps, let’s watch it again. 

In the spirit of being a reluctant optimist, I must remind you, in your best interest and mine, that there is, in fact, another game today. Pitching for Cleveland is Shane Bieber (15-7, 3.23 ERA). At 252 strikeouts, he’s third in the American League in this category. He’s also third in the American League in WHIP at 1.030. The Biebs has had a solid September: he’s won 3 out of his last 4 decisions, striking out 28 and only walking 3. 

Pitching for the White Sox is Ross Detwiler (2-5, 6.98 ERA). In 10 starts, Big Boss Ross carries a 6.17 ERA. His last start against Cleveland was … not great. In 2.2 innings, he gave up four runs on four hits, four of them earned, walking six.

Here are the lineups:

Some fun things to note: the 2019 season may be winding down for the Good Guys, but Tim Anderson, as of last night with 503 plate appearances, officially qualifies for the American League Batting Title. (502 plate appearances are required, in a 162 game season.) 

Timmy actually leads all of baseball in average right now, at .334.

Leading the National League at .329 is none other than My Other Fave, Christian Yelich. Excuse me while I go off to cry for a little while.

José Abreu also still leads the American League in RBI, so we have that going for us, which is nice. At 121, he’s three behind Anthony Rendon to lead all of baseball.

You can catch tonight’s 7:10 CST matchup on NBC Sports Chicago; if radio’s more your thing, tune into WGN 720. 

Gamethread: White Sox at Cleveland

Bossa Nova: The righty enters September, hoping to continue a jazzy second half . (Clinton Cole/South Side Hit Pen)

Last night, Eloy Jiménez said hello to Cleveland with a two-home run game, catapulting the Chicago White Sox to a thrilling 6-5 victory at Progressive Field. Dylan Cease struck out 11 to complement the offense, resulting in the sweet release from a seven-game losing streak. 

Tonight, the White Sox look to create another type of streak, by potentially winning two games consecutively. To help this effort, Chicago sends Iván Nova to the mound. Nova wasn’t super in his last start, which was against Atlanta on August 30th: In four innings pitched, he gave up eight hits and five runs (four of them earned), striking out none. However, his August overall was stellar, with a 1.95 ERA in 37 innings pitched. 

Nova’s Cleveland counterpart is Shane Bieber. The 24-year-old All-Star righty has a respectable 12-7 record, 4.2 WAR, and 3.27 ERA. He also carries an impressive 1.007 WHIP and 224 strikeouts into tonight’s game, placing him third in the American League in both of those categories. Interesting to note: Yoán Moncada, batting cleanup tonight, is slashing .556/.600/1.333 in 10 plate appearances vs. Bieber.

Speaking of lineups …

A streak has to start somewhere, right? Catch tonight’s 6:10 p.m. CST start televised on NBC Sports Chicago; for a more auditory experience, tune into WGN 720.