Once again, I'd like to thank my friends at Rock M Nation for this idea.
John Danks--Finally, a real bright spot from the White Sox rotation. Danks took a no-hitter into the sixth and only gave up one run on two hits through 6.2 innings of stellar work.
Danks used his cut fastball very well, frequently jamming hitters inside, causing them to pop out or hit the ball weakly on the ground.
If the White Sox want to have any success this year, they're going to need Danks, Jose Contreras, and Gavin Floyd to pitch well. Danks did his part today, big time.
Octavio Dotel--It took a lot of guts for Ozzie Guillen to call on Dotel to pitch in nearly the same spot as he did on Monday, when he gave up a game-winning three-run double to Casey Blake.
With runners on second and third and two out, Guillen pulled Danks from the game in favor of Dotel, who promptly came in and threw two quick strikes to Blake before getting him to fly out to shallow center.
Hopefully, whatever confidence Dotel lost on Monday was regained today.
Scott Linebrink--Making his White Sox debut, Linebrink retired Kelly Shoppach, Grady Sizemore, and Victor Martinez in order by getting ahead and throwing strikes.
That's the way Linebrink, who isn't going to blow you away with his stuff, will have to pitch to have success setting up Bobby Jenks.
Bobby Jenks--Jenks was very impressive in the ninth, retiring Jhonny Peralta, Travis Hafner, and Sox-killer Ryan Garko in order for his first save of the year.
Jenks got Hafner to strike out on a filthy changeup, a pitch he hardly threw last year. If he can consistently throw that changeup, he'll have four pitches that he can throw for strikes–fastball, cutter, curve, and changeup–further cementing his status as one of the best closers in the game today.
The Kansas City Royals--Ok, this doesn't have anything to do with today's game, but this team deserves some credit. As I'm finishing this article up, Zack Grienke is shutting down the Tigers lineup (again) and the Royals look poised to sweep Detroit on the road.
Even if they can't hold on to the lead, though, they exposed a lot of Detroit's weaknesses while showing off their strengths in this series. These aren't the "roll over and die" Royals that we've seen over the last three years. This team is going to put up a fight every time they take the field–and the American League need take note.
Bobby Jenks' chin hair--I know I'm satisfied with the way this game was played when this is the only thing in the "bad" category. Yes, there was a pretty terrible lack of communication in center between Jermaine Dye and Nick Swisher that nearly cost the Sox a run, but I'm not too worried about that as Swisher won't be playing center much once Jerry Owens comes off the disabled list.
So then, too my point: Bobby, what is that? It looks like he has a piece of long, dead grass growing out of his chin. He needs to shave that ASAP.
The offense--Jake Westbrook was on his game today, but still, the White Sox were trying to pull the ball way too often.
He made two bad pitches all game, though, which ultimately cost him. Juan Uribe nailed a solo home run in the sixth and Crede added a solo shot of his own in the eighth to account for both of the Sox' runs in the game.
So, while the offense did enough to win, they could have done more.
Next up: Jose Contreras vs. Detroit (Nate Robertson), 12:05 CST.