Surely back-to-back nights of the bullpen clinging to one-run leads over multiple innings to prop up average or worse contributions from the offense will be prominently featured in the best-seller "How an Awful Bullpen Derailed the 2014 White Sox Juggernaut." To be fair, three innings of shutout White Sox relief came in true 2014 fashion, with Robin Ventura using four relievers: two to fall on their face and show up totally without command, and another two to rescue them. Tonight Ronald Belisario rescued Javy Guerra and Jake Petricka was rescued by Zach Putnam in the ninth, but the roles could easily reverse tomorrow. Well maybe not the Guerra part. He really doesn't have a second pitch most nights.
- Tyler Flowers was the offensive star of the night, going 3-3 with the go-ahead RBI double for the second-straight game, and getting hit with a pitch to knock in another run in his other time up. A lot has been made of Flowers trying to revamp his approach in reaction to his terrifying slide from his helium-infused April. He's saying good things about trying to take more balls, which is good because an extreme walking and banging approach is about the only way he sniffs a .700 OPS.
- This has become the trademark Hector Noesi start, or more, the idealized Hector Noesi start, since he occasionally biffs it entirely. He sopped up innings (6 IP) threw strikes (just one walk), and was open for punishment throughout (3 ER, including a LONG George Springer HR) because he more relies on natural movement than any true wipeout offerings (only two K's). He's not really an interesting pitcher, but it would be interesting if he could do this consistently, since a low-ceiling but enduring fifth starter might be more valuable than a Jason Bere impersonator.
- Instant Replay is clearly necessary, since the umpires had to overturn three dreadful calls Saturday night, but can't help from being unlovable. Not only did some reviews take nearly four minutes to complete, but MLB.com hilariously makes sure highlights of each one and updates on how they went go up to the top of every page. Hey I know you're bummed you missed out on umpires watching TV, but never fear!
- Carlos Sanchez was optioned after the game. It's a logical move since a healthy Alexei Ramirex robs him of most of his playing time opportunities lest a more forceful decision on Leury Garcia comes down the pipe. Who is coming in his place is a mystery, since Andre Rienzo is ineligible, Frank De Los Santos is inactive, Erik Johnson is hardly fixed and no one else is on the 40-man.
Team Record: 47-51
Next game is Sunday at 1:10pm CT on CSN
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