CHICAGO – In the grand scheme of things, the teams haven’t played all that much in their long histories.
Since they were in different leagues, the White Sox and the Dodgers only met six times before the arrival of interleague play in 1997. In that span, the Chicago American League team has 17 wins over the Los Angeles National League team, and Tuesday was another triumph for the Southsiders.
It also ended up something that’s been a little more common than one might expect from White Sox wins over the Dodgers – a shutout. The 4-0 victory was the fifth time they’ve held the Los Angeles teams scoreless dating back to their meeting in the 1959 World Series.
Five White Sox pitchers combined to get the job done on Tuesday, with starter Michael Kopech leading the way in another strong performance. The pitcher’s six shutout innings included just one hit with eight strikeouts compared to just one walk.
It’s the fourth start this year where Kopech has failed to allow a run as his ERA on the season drops to 1.94. All of the run support he would need came after his final inning, with a two-run single by AJ Pollock, a run-scoring double by Jake Burger, and a Reese McGuire RBI single in the sixth giving the White Sox all of their runs for the evening.
Reynaldo Lopez, Aaron Bummer, and Kendall Graveman would keep Los Angeles off the scoreboard for the next two innings before Liam Hendriks finished off the effort with a perfect ninth inning.
It’s the fifth time the White Sox have shutout the Dodgers, with the first two coming in the 1959 World Series. In Game 1 at Comiskey Park, the team beat Los Angeles 11-0 to take the early series lead then fought off elimination after three-straight losses to win Game 5 1-0 at the LA Coliseum.
The Dodgers would win Game 6 in Chicago to capture their first World Series title in Los Angeles. Oddly enough, the next time the Dodgers would visit the south side would also be a shutout, as the White Sox beat them 6-0 on June 17, 2005 in the second interleague meeting between the teams.
Once again, the White Sox would hold the Dodgers scoreless when they played in Los Angeles in their next interleague series, beating them 2-0 on June 26, 2008.
For what it’s worth, every time the White Sox have shutout the Dodgers in a game, they’ve either been in the World Series or made the playoffs. This one comes as Tony La Russa’s team extends their winning streak to three in hopes of reaching the postseason again.