Life is good! Life is just! The universe has rewarded us for our sufferiiiiiiiiiiiing! Which is, um, to say, that a powerful performance from the White Sox that affirmed their ability to hang with the elites of the AL Central was due. Overdue? No, it's April 22nd. Nothing is overdue. And we're stretching it to call the Indians AL Central elite since this was essentially a tiebreaker game to determine who has been the biggest early-season disappointment among AL Central contenders.
But pantsing Corey Kluber with a barrage of hits, Jose Abreu burninating the countryside and Jeff Samardzija errrr uhhhh, hanging in there, provided as complete of a victory as the Sox have managed since the Sox, you know, stomped out Detroit this past weekend. But since there was an actual series victory here, and they have yet to follow it up with a blowout loss; this is sweeter.
- 10 of Jose Abreu's 16 hits this season have gone for extra bases, and after he smacked an opposite-field solo shot in the first inning, and a game-breaking two-run double in the seventh, his ISO is now .382, which is only slightly less than the league slugging percentage (.389) and the national debt. He even brought home a run while grounding into a double play in the third. Not since Derrick Rose have Chicago sports fans had a virtuoso talent they could root to win the MVP award over a generational player.
- Jeff Samardzija threw six shutout innings on 113 pitches, which sounds normal enough and commendable. He labored for most of the day, couldn't find the strike zone with any consistency early on, backflipped his way out of multiple jams and needed a lot of impatient help from Cleveland's lineup to get through six frames at under 18,000 pitches thrown. His stuff is lively as always but command has not frequently been his companion this season, and it would be really nice if I didn't feel like I was quoting his pre-draft scouting report so much. He's stringing together good outings now, which should be enough, but you called him an ace all winter long so I will be merciless.
- Gordon Beckham is...helping the team? Of all the things the Sox threw in the mix for 2015, this is what's working? He was ideally deployed Wednesday, subbing for Conor Gillaspie after he reached base in his last opportunity to hit against the right-handed starter and immediately provided ace defense. He's also 6-16 on the year.
- The Sox bullpen might be aces? Dan Jennings has looked mostly tremendous and breezed through another clean inning on just eight pitches. Zach Duke has been steady and Jake Petricka made a scoreless debut. David Robertson didn't pitch probably because he was in court being arraigned for vaporizing people.
- Hitters No. 9 (Micah Johnson) through No. 4 went 10-20 and scored five times.
Next game is Thursday at 7:10pm CT vs. Kansas City on CSN+