Dylan Cease wasn’t all that bad, but it was still a performance far enough from the norm for him to doom the timid White Sox offense tonight in Baltimore. After Eloy Jimenez started off the game with a two-run homer, the South Siders’ bats went back to their usual ways, tallying seven more hits to score just one more run. At the end of the day, Chicago lost 5-3, their fifth loss in six games, and now sit 3.5 games back of the division lead, pending the Cleveland Guardians contest tonight.
Meanwhile, Dylan Cease had a similar outing, yielding a 3-run homer to Ryan Mountcastle in the first inning and then recovering nicely for a 5.1 IP, 4 ER outing. A bunt single by Cedric Mullins and a hard-earned Adley Rutschman walk set the stage for Mountcastle, who worked the count to 3-1 and then smacked a meatball slider over the center field wall. Baltimore would tally just three more hits but score twice more in the game via an Anthony Santander single in the sixth off Cease and a Jorge Mateo single in the seventh off Jimmy Lambert.
Andrew Vaughn plated Luis Robert in the top of the seventh with a 2-out single, but otherwise tonight was more of the same for the White Sox after Eloy’s dinger. A bunch of singles, some walks, and more than a couple missed opportunities, as the road team stranded 13 men on base over the course of the evening. Notably, Elvis Andrus stranded two runners to end the seventh, while Jose Abreu swung at a 3-2 fastball out of the zone to leave the bases loaded in the eighth. He was 0-for-5 on the evening. Ouch.
White Sox Scoring Recap:
Top 1st: Eloy Jimenez hits a home run to right center field. 2-0 White Sox
Top 6th: Andrew Vaughn singles to left field. Luis Robert scores. 4-3 Orioles
Dylan Cease: 5.1 IP, 4 ER, 3 H, 3 BB, 4 K
Last week saw Cease’s 14-game streak of allowing one run or less come to an end. However, it was still a decent outing, as he pitched 5 innings with just 3 runs allowed, and two of those runs could easily have been attributed to an error. He did appear a bit shaken to start of the night tonight, though, as Mountcastle’s homer put him in a hole early. Cease battled through one out in the sixth frame, however, and kept his ballclub in the game despite not having his best stuff. The young star now has a 2.27 ERA on the season.
Luis Robert: 3-for-5, 2 2B, 1 R
Robert was a force at the plate tonight, smoking two balls over 100 mph and registering a double that would have been a home run at every other park in the league (although he would end up scoring that inning).
Eloy Jimenez: 1-for-2, 1 HR, 2 BB, 1 HBP, 2 RBI
Jimenez continues to be one of the most consistent bats in the Chicago lineup, driving one out over the right-center wall in the first and then proceeding to get on base three more times. He was hit by a Felix Bautista 102 mph fastball in the eighth inning, though, and Sox fans everywhere are bracing for that injury news. On the year, Eloy has a .306/.372/.465 line at the plate.
Other Game Highlights
The Next Matchup
The series continues tomorrow with Lucas Giolito on the mound for the Sox, who will square off against Orioles’ righty Spencer Watkins.
That game will kick off once more at 6:05 CST on NBC Sports Chicago.
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