Again, another shout-out to my friends at Rock M Nation for this idea.
AJ Pierzynski--Pierzynski was the only hitter in the White Sox lineup who had the right idea against Fausto Carmona today. He had two singles, one a soft line drive into center and the other a sharp ground ball down the third base line.
The key? He didn't try to pull the ball.
Read "hitting" under the "bad" section and you'll see what I'm getting at.
Pierzynski also added a ninth-inning home run off Jorge Julio, but it was far too little too late.
Javier Vazquez--A lot of people (myself included) are expecting big things out of Vazquez this year, believing that he can improve on a 15-win campaign in 2007.
However, the Vazquez that pitched today looked much like the 2006 version of Vazquez. He would get hitters 0-2 or 1-2 and the start nibbling with his breaking pitches, and before you knew it, it was 3-2 or he had already walked the batter.
He wasn't hit particularly hard, but his refusal (not inability, mind you) to throw strikes when ahead in the count is what cost him four runs over his five innings.
Mike MacDougal--Unlike Vazquez, MacDougal was unable to throw strikes today, much like he was unable to throw strikes in 2007. He relied heavily on his breaking ball and couldn't get it over, except for when he hung it.
Why MacDougal is still a part of this team when Ehren Wassermann is toiling away in the minors is beyond me.
The offense--If Monday's game reminded me of 2006, today's game reminded me of 2007.
Against a pitcher like Fausto Carmona, you have to take him up the middle or the other way. Trying to pull his turbo sinker is an exercise in futility, but the Sox tried to do just that and grounded into three huge double plays early in the game.
Carmona wasn't throwing a whole lot of strikes, but when he did, most of this lineup tried to pull him. The lone RBI of the game came on a *gasp* single up the middle by Joe Crede.
Also, where was hitting coach Greg Walker? Shouldn't he have realized this and told his hitters to take it the other way or up the middle?
The Sox looked like they had a rally in them in the eighth, but that was blown when Jermaine Dye struck out after fouling off an absolutely meaty 2-0 pitch from Rafael Perez with the bases loaded.
At the least, if the Sox could have mustered two runs, they would have forced Joe Borowski, who has a penchant for giving up lots of earned runs, into the game.
Nothing, really. This was just a horribly played game by the White Sox.
They'll have to bring more than they did today if they want to avoid a sweep at the hands of the Indians.
Next game: John Danks vs. Jake Westbrook, 11:05 Central