BALTIMORE – One of the keys to his selection as a starter for the 2018 MLB All-Star Game was his strong start to the season – one in which he hit .264 in April then increased that to .330 in May.
While his pace is a bit slower in 2019, it appears that Jose Abreu is getting ready to heat up for the White Sox, even if it wasn’t in time to get a series win in Baltimore.
The first baseman had two more doubles and a pair of RBI against the Orioles on Wednesday night, including one in the ninth inning as the White Sox tried to make a late rally. But in the end it fell a run short, as the hosts picked up a 4-3 win to take two-of-three in the series.
Four runs in the first four innings off Ervin Santana, who struggled again in his fourth start for the White Sox, were enough to send Rick Renteria’s club to 9-14 on the season.
Abreu proved the bright spot and got the White Sox on the board with a double to right to score Tim Anderson in the third that cut the lead to 3-1 at the moment. His team was still down by two in the ninth when the first baseman came through again, knocking in Leury Garcia with a double to center to cut the lead to one.
He’d move to third on a wild pitch with one out, but James McCann struck out and Yoan Moncada grounded out to end the game.
Yet the effort continues a strong stretch for Abreu, who had only three hits in ten games from April 8th through the 18th. Since then, he’s enjoyed a strong five games in Detroit and Baltimore, collecting nine hits in 22 at-bats with four doubles and a homer in that stretch.
Monday was his best game of the stretch as he drove in a season-high five runs to add to his nine RBI during the last five games. It has boosted his batting average to .241 after it sat under .200 for the good portion of the month.
It’s only a small stretch in a bit of a slow start, but to see one of the leaders of the team find his way at the plate certainly brings some positives as the first month of the season comes to a close.