CHICAGO – It was the start of a different era at the ballpark from the perspective of the fan and the priority of the franchise to keep them safe.
After a half-season of high profile fan injuries from foul balls, the White Sox had their expanded netting ready to go for Monday night’s game against the Marlins at Guaranteed Rate Field. The barrier went all the way down the lines to the foul poles, changing the look along with the perspective of the fans a bit in the name of safety.
As each person in the ballpark has their own opinion on the nets, they won’t have any complaints with how the team played in their first game since the expansion. In fact, the White Sox made sure to deliver some souvenirs to those not behind the nets in the outfield.
Four different players on the home team hit home runs in the first of their three-game interleague series against the Marlins on Monday night in a 9-1 White Sox victory. On top of of the offense, starter Ivan Nova delivered his best performance of the season, pitching a complete game to give the team their third win since the All-Star break.
After a significant amount of pregame attention on the expanded netting, the White Sox wasted no time getting to the lead on an RBI double from Jose Abreu then Yoan Moncada’s run-scoring single. Abreu was the first on the team to hit a homer on the night as he sent out a two-run shot in the third to make it 4-1. Moncada got one of his own to center field with two on-base in the fifth as his 410-foot blast was his 18th homer on the season and put the White Sox up 7-1.
James McCann and Ryan Goins each had a solo homer in the sixth inning to complete the scoring, then it was all about Nova. A third inning homer by Jorge Alfaro was the only run Miami would get against the starter, who allowed five hits and struck out five batters without allowing a walk. It Nova’s longest outing by two full innings in 2019 and his first complete game since 2017 when he was with the Pittsburgh Pirates.
All were apart of a memorable effort on a night of change at Guaranteed Rate Field as the White Sox responded with one of their best efforts of the season.