(Photo Credit: Associated Press)
The Detroit Tigers (50-41) always bring the worst out in any Chicago fan–so it’s no surprise that there was a bench-clearing incident in today’s White Sox (36-53) series finale in Detroit. But we’ll get to that.
The series overall has been fun to watch—arguably the most fun a White Sox fan has had in a long time. With the last place Southsiders pulling a series win from the AL Central leaders, it gave all Sox fans a reason to enjoy the game and temporarily forget about looming trade rumors.
But first, some quick recaps (if you just clicked this link to see a fight, keep scrolling):
7/9—White Sox 11, Tigers 4: With Detroit stud Justin Verlander (9-6, 3.7) at the mound, the White Sox fired away to a season high of 23 hits in a game(Alex Rios tying an AL record of six hits in a game). But the real action happened at the top of the eighth inning, where 13 Sox batters scored seven runs with nine hits to break the tie. I’d love to go in to detail on all the awesome hits, but really just about everyone—but surprisingly not Phegley—rocked the batter’s box. After seven consecutive no-decisions, Chicago starter Jose Quintana (4-2, 3.67) finally got a win, which was his first decision since May against Boston.
7/10—Tigers 8, White Sox 5: Dylan Axelrod (3-6, 5.3) gave up the long ball this game allowing a two-run shot to Fielder in the first inning, among other starter faux pas (his earned runs continue to skyrocket, allowing 29 in his last six starts). Miguel Cabrera, Prince Fielder and Detroit’s power posse were silenced in the first game, but quickly bounced back as the middle of the lineup accounted for almost all the hits and runs attributed to their win. Gordon Beckham and Conor Gillaspie both homered in the loss—and actually, the Sox hitting wasn’t too shabby—but it wasn’t enough to make up for the power hitting of Cabrera and crew.
7/11—White Sox 6, Detroit 3: The finale was the dramatic cherry on top that reminds us why we don’t like Detroit. Chris Sale (6-8, 2.7) started for the Sox, allowing 3 runs in 6 1/2 innings, but hit Prince Fielder with a pitch after Miguel Cabrera’s homer in the fifth (his 30th homer of the year, might I add). There seemed to be no controversy other than some grumbling in the Tigers dugout, until they lost the lead. When Detroit’s Luke Putkonen fired a fastball at Alexei Ramirez following Jason Phegley’s grand slam (which put the Sox ahead 5-3), well, it went down.
And as Ramirez approached the mound in sassy Cuban style, both benches cleared and ran to the action.
No punches were thrown, but one can only imagine the colorful language involved. The debacle resulted in the ejection of Putkonen and Tigers manager Jim Leyland. The Sox ended up winning with big hits from Alejandro De Aza, Josh Phegley, and Conor Gillaspie.
- Next Detroit matchup is set for a four-game series starting July 22nd in Chicago. They still have 16 matchups to go this season– bring on the chaos!
- In Chris Sale’s second All-Star game appearance, he will be managed by Jim Leyland, which will most likely be unpleasant for everyone.
- Axelrod needs to get it together.
- Phegley is still a boss. Of his four hits so far this season, 3 have been home runs.
- Sox head to Philadelphia for this weekend’s series. The White Sox will send left-hander John Danks (2-5, 4.31) to the mound. The Phillies’ scheduled starter is right-hander Jonathan Pettibone (5-3, 3.84) in the 6:05 p.m. CST start time at Citizens Bank Park.