The first series of the White Sox’s 2022 season is officially in the record books. After a tough opening day loss, the White Sox rebounded to take the series 2-1 and (hopefully) set the tone for the season.
The biggest negative of the series was the horrific injury luck that the White Sox faced. Before the series started, Lance Lynn, Yoan Moncada, and Garrett Crochet all suffered injuries. But that’s not all. After 4 innings, Lucas Giolito came out of the first game with an injury; he will miss at least 2 starts. And then in the second game, AJ Pollock suffered an injury while rounding first base.
Javier Baez‘s Walkoff
Let’s talk about the walkoff. First of all, the White Sox should not have been there. Before you put the blame on AJ Pollock, consider the fact that the bullpen had let up 3 runs in less than two innings before Javier Baez even stepped up to the plate. Liam Hendriks came into the game and pitched 3 outs, allowing 4 hits. The combination of Aaron Bummer and Liam Hendriks should get the majority of the blame, because if they had done their job, Javier Baez wouldn’t have the opportunity to hit a walkoff.
Now that we’ve covered the fact that the White Sox shouldn’t have been there, let’s talk about the actual play. Austin Meadows was at third base with two outs, and Javier Baez stepped up to the plate. He hits it deep to right field, AJ Pollock goes back, the ball hits the wall, and Pollock catches it off the wall. But as it turns out, if the ball hits the wall, you can’t catch it afterwards. The play gets overturned and the Tigers get the win.
If you look at the replay, it becomes apparent very quickly that Pollock should’ve caught it before the ball hit the wall. Should we all grab our torches and march to AJ Pollock’s house screaming bloody murder? Absolutely not. Mistakes happen, and it’s just one game. There’s a lot of baseball left to be played.
The Two White Sox Wins
Now, for the fun part. I guess White Sox pitching didn’t especially like allowing runs, because they only allowed three in the next two games. In the first win, Dylan Cease pitched like he urgently needed to use the restroom. He threw slider after slider, and the Tigers hitters just kept chasing them. All in all, Cease struck out 8 in 5 innings while only allowing a single run. Reynaldo Lopez almost blew the game in the next inning, but he managed to escape with minimal damage.
Game 3 was a blowout. It was never close; as it turns out, Tim Anderson really does provide a spark to the offense. There really isn’t that much to say about this game; the White Sox played flawless baseball.
All in all, this was a solid series for the White Sox. Besides the heartbreak of the first game, the Tigers were never really in it. This should be a great year for the White Sox.
Image credit: @WhiteSox twitter