CLEVELAND – A week ago, fans were as happy as they could be when it came to their 2020 version of the White Sox.
They’d beaten division rival Minnesota at home to clinch their first playoff berth in 12 years and were in a great position to come home with an American League Central division title.
But those positive vibes have taken a hit over the last week, and now the White Sox are looking up at those same Twins in the division with a weekend to play. Two bad series in Ohio, especially the latter, are the reason why.
After winning the first three games of the series to Cleveland, with the last two coming on walk-off hits, the White Sox endured one of the most painful losses of their season. Up 4-1, the bullpen let in four runs in the frame, all coming off pitcher Carlos Rodon who just came off the injured list.
The 5-4 defeat not only allowed the Indians to pull out the brooms at Progressive Field, but now has the White Sox sitting a game behind Minnesota in the AL Central with three games ahead against the rival Cubs at home.
Certainly the White Sox had their chances for a better ending in Cleveland, and did what they could through six-and-a-half innings. Dallas Keuchel allowed just one run in 4 2/3 while his offense provide support on a Yolmer Sanchez solo homer in the third and three runs in the seventh inning.
Yasmani Grandal’s ground out and a two-run single by Nomar Mazara made it 4-1, but by the bottom half of the inning it was gone. Jimmy Cordero allowed three-straight singles but got two quick outs to keep a run from scoring, but Rodon couldn’t do the same.
In his first outing in a month-and-a-half, Rodon allowed Cesar Ramirez to single just over the head of Sanchez at second to bring in two runs to make it 4-3. Jose Ramirez then double home the tying and go-ahead runs and the White Sox would never recover.