Just call it the White Sox way.
That’s what Jake Peavy is calling it, the team’s tendency to make things real interesting late in games. It happened again Friday night, when closer Addison Reed allowed a run in the ninth to make a 5-3 game a lot more uncomfortable at 5-4.
The Sox won for the third straight game and Reed picked up his third straight save -- his eighth of the season -- but this one wasn’t without certain theatrics.
Reed entered the game with the Sox up 5-3. After Kelly Johnson struck out looking, Jose Molina lined a double off the top of the wall in centerfield, missing the glove of Jordan Danks, who crashed into the wall. At least, it sure looked like a double. Molina stood at second base while Rays manager Joe Maddon had a conversation with the umpiring crew, which eventually decided to utilize video review to see the play more closely. After the review, the umpires maintained it was a double, but it wasn’t without somewhat of a delay.
“I definitely don’t think it went out,” Reed said of the hit. “I have no question that it [didn’t go] out. Danks made a heck of an effort out of it, and it’s unfortunate he didn’t come up with it. But that’s on me. If he wouldn’t have hit it, he would’ve never been put in that situation.”
Reed got Sam Fuld to pop out after the review, but Matt Joyce singled on the next at-bat to drive in Molina and narrow the lead to 5-4. Reed then walked Ryan Roberts to put two on with two outs before ending the game with a strikeout of Ben Zobrist.
The outing marked only the second time all season Reed has allowed a run, the last coming April 16 in a 4-3 win against the Blue Jays. The walk of Roberts was just the fourth of the year for Reed and the first he’s issued since April 14 against the Indians.
The guesses of why Reed was a little shaky ranged from three straight days of work to the review delay to something completely different. But Reed dismissed all of it.
“I definitely didn’t lose any focus, that’s for sure,” Reed said of the review delay. “Physically, my arm, nothing felt different once play resumed. I don’t think that affected me at all. Just a couple bad pitches, I left a couple bad pitches over the plate, and that’s where I kind of got hurt.”
And what about his back-to-back-to-back save opportunities?
“I want to be out there every day,” Reed said. “In the same opportunity tomorrow, I’m going to be ready to go. Honestly, physically I felt the same as I did my last two outings, so nothing felt any different, no soreness. Everything felt good, and I’ll be ready to go tomorrow.”
Manager Robin Ventura agreed and added that the workload is simply just the life of a closer.
“That’s his job, and it’s pass and fail,” Ventura said. “Tonight it’s pass and he looks good. The more he pitches, the better he is. We like that he gets to come in and pitch. There might be times you might somebody else in that role if he’s had a lot in a row. But it’s his job to do.”
Ninth-inning dramatics? According to Peavy, that’s just the White Sox way.
“It’s never easy. That’s the White Sox way right there,” Peavy said. “How many laughers have you seen, where it’s ‘yeah, we’ve got this one in the bag.’ We’d like to say those build character, but it wouldn’t be nice. So hopefully we’ll come out tomorrow and beat somebody 10-0.”