Matt Lindstrom, in floating fastballs up in the zone repeatedly, blowing a one-run save, wasting a comeback and taking the loss in a sloppy and wet 10-9 defeat to the Twins, could at least take heart in knowing he was not alone.
The de-facto closer of the moment was only part of a bullpen that allowed five runs over four innings, and turned 8-5 and 9-8 leads into the first loss of the season.
The RBI single Lindstrom allowed to Trevor Plouffe to tie the game, and the booming go-ahead triple to center Oswaldo Arcia clubbed beyond the grasp of Adam Eaton (who robbed him on a nearly identical play to end the seventh) weren't as bad as the results generated by Nate Jones. After walking two more batters in the seventh, both of whom scored to trim the Sox lead to one, Jones has yet to retire a batter all year and his trademark delivery is looking more like a hitch that throws off his aim before he releases every time. A Josmil Pinto bomb in the eighth got Ronald Belisario involved in the tailspin erased the last traces of the initial seven-run surge that put the Sox ahead until Lindstrom was handed a save opportunity to spurn.
The shenanigans gave another no decision to Jose Quintana, who provided an uneven six innings; striking out eight but allowing the bases to be emptied twice for five runs.
In 2013, four runs was typically more than the White Sox could manage over nine innings. On Thursday, they reduced a deficit that size to ashes in two. After the second of two Chris Colabello RBI doubles the Sox were stuck in a 5-1 hole going into the bottom half of the fifth.
From there on out, they scored eight runs, lost the lead back again and saw Marcus Semien transition from hopeless, to legally alive and all the way to nearly a hero.
After yesterday, where the Twins treated Jose Abreu like the only hitter on the team, they enjoyed the fruit of a competent top of the order. Adam Eaton started the fifth off with a triple to the right field corner, scored on an Abreu double to the warning track in the right-center gap, and had all his hurry mocked when Adam Dunn cut the lead to one by keeping his wrists inside a Phil Hughes fastball and flipping it into the seats.
The fifth inning push was started by one of Tyler Flowers' four singles on the day (yes). After Leury Garcia singled himself on, Adam Eaton and Marcus Semien each sweated out full-count walks, the latter of which tied the game at five. More importantly, the Sox navigated the iffy parts of their order to get their one true masher, Abreu, up in a critical situation. After looking confused by two-straight curves, Abreu leaned over and crushed a triple to the center field wall that cleared the bases after turning Twins center fielder Aaron Hicks a few times.
Marcus Semien's first hit, a go-ahead solo shot into the left field bullpen in the eighth, provided brief hope that the Sox still could overcome their pitching deficiencies. But it was not to be, even after a Dayan Viciedo duck snort combined with a Twins throwing error put him on third with one out for no good reason.
Alejandro De Aza added his third home run of the year in the second.
Team Record: 2-1
Next game: Tomorrow at Kansas City at 3:10pm