White Sox 11, Royals 6: Bounce-back Win Powered by the Offense

The White Sox needed to open the Kansas City series with a bang after a lackluster performance in Minnesota earlier this week, and the offense ensured that they did just that on Thursday night at Kauffman Stadium, scoring 11 runs on 13 hits en route to an 11-6 victory over the Royals, their 23rd victory on the season.

After a five-run second inning by the White Sox, the victory was only in doubt about as much as Luis Robert‘s seventh-inning rocket that traveled 458 feet into the Missouri night sky.

Legging it out

We’ve said for weeks that Yoan Moncada just doesn’t look right out on the field and Thursday before the game he confirmed such. “My body hasn’t felt the same after the virus,” Moncada said Thursday. “I feel a lack of energy and strength.”

After missing nearly the entirety of Summer Camp it seems that Moncada is still feeling the effects of his bout with the novel COVID-19 virus that has knocked our nation back on its heels for the better part of the year 2020.

What I don’t understand, is why Rick Renteria refuses to give the struggling Moncada some ample time to rest. With the White Sox playing their next eight games in a span of 10 days against the Royals, Pirates, and Tigers, there won’t be a better time to place Moncada on the 10-day injured list to allow him to get off of his legs for a week and a half or so.

Renteria said he hopes he can play to the talent level he knows Moncada has, but that’s just not going to happen if he doesn’t give him some time to recover. Nick Madrigal is healthy and playing well at second base, and Danny Mendick has proven he can play well for extended runs this season, so why not now?

Cease to Dominate

I wrote a lengthy story on Thursday afternoon about the flaws in the White Sox roster as they gear up for a playoff push this month, and one of the main themes in that story was the starting rotation constantly failing to protect the bullpen by stringing together abbreviated performances on the mound.

Thursday was no different as Dylan Cease only lasted five innings against the lowly Kansas City Royals, allowing three runs on four hits and two walks. It took Cease 96 pitches to labor through five innings, leaving the bullpen to cover 12 outs once again.

“I have to do a better job filling the strike zone,” Cease said to reporters after the game.

Welcome to the Bigs

Just a mere hours after being recalled from the White Sox alternate site in Schaumburg, Bernardo Flores Jr. made his major-league debut against the Royals, entering the ballgame out of the bullpen in the home half of the 8th inning.

Flores allowed a single to Bubba Starling and a double to Edward Olivares to open the frame — both would come around to score — but retired each of the next three hitters on a pair of ground balls and his first career strikeout against Meibrys Viloria to end the inning.

On Deck

The White Sox and Royals continue their four-game series on Friday night with two former teammates squaring off on the hill. Dane Dunning (0-0, 2.89 ERA) will oppose Brady Singer (1-3, 5.19 ERA) at Kauffman Stadium, but both were teammates on the 2016 Florida Gators team before Dunning was drafted by the Washington Nationals in June of 2016 near the end of the first round. Singer would go on to be drafted by the Royals in June of 2018, and both made their major-league debuts this season.

Dunning will look to best a marvelous performance this past Sunday against the Royals when he threw five no-hit innings at Guaranteed Rate Field before Luis Robert sealed the deal in extra innings with a walk-off three-run blast. Dunning struck out seven Royals’ hitters and walked just on 79 pitches before being removed from the game.

White Sox general manager Rick Hahn said earlier this week that Dunning’s performance fueled a handful of phone calls regarding his availability leading up to Monday’s trade deadline.

Featured Photo: Orlin Wagner, AP

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