Our Palehose continue to roll, as the Sox won their fourth straight by defeating the Angels 3-0 tonight. It was almost a carbon copy of Sunday night’s game against the Halos in Chicago, beating them by the same score with Sale being dominant once again.
Dominant pitching, good defense, and timely hitting in this one means this was one of the better performances by this team all season.
Sale’s Dominant Performance
7.2 innings. 3 hits. 0 runs. 12 strikeouts.
That’s now 16.2 straight shutout innings for Sale against the same opponent, only giving up four hits over that span. That’s also now 23 consecutive scoreless innings dating back to his start last week in Kansas City. Right now, I think it’s pretty safe to say that he’s the hottest pitcher in the American League.
When his breaking pitches are on like they were tonight, the opposing offense really doesn’t stand much of a chance.
Yes, the Angels are struggling and have been all season, but there are still some very scary hitters in that lineup that Sale’s made look like September call-ups. I don’t think I’ve ever seen Josh Hamilton look this bad at the plate.
Offense Keeps Hitting the Ball Hard
The three runs for the offense was the least on this current winning streak, but the team had a lot of what Hawk likes to call “hang with ‘ems” tonight. Paul Konerko especially was a victim of this, who went 1-for-4 but hit the ball hard pretty much every time up.
Adam Dunn continued his hot streak, hitting a line drive home run in the eighth, while Alex Rios tallied two hits, including a first inning home run that barely made it over the left field fence. The Tank picked up two more hits as well, and Conor Gillaspie hit a rocket up the middle for an RBI single in the seventh.
All in all, it was a great night of timely hitting for this offense against a good pitcher in CJ Wilson.
Bullpen Doesn’t Waste Time
The back end duo of Jesse Crain and Addison Reed retired all four hitters they face in relief of Chris Sale.
I think I’ve said it enough; these two have been maybe the best set-up-man/closer combinations this season in all of baseball despite the team struggling out of the gate.
It will be Hector Santiago on the mound tomorrow afternoon opposing Joe Blanton, who is still looking for his first win on the season. With the way the Sox are playing right now, the team has a good chance of taking these last two games given the pitching matchups (Peavy v. Jason Vargas on Sunday).
This brand of baseball the Sox are playing right now is much more fun to watch, isn’t it?