On The Farm: Charlotte Literally Walks Off With A Win

On The Farm: Charlotte Literally Walks Off With A Win

Friday, Aug. 20, 2010
Posted: 12:05 a.m.
By Kevin Czerwinski
CSNChicago.com
WHITE SOXCharlotte AAA
Charlotte snapped its five-game losing streak Thursday night at Knights Stadium, topping Gwinnett, 4-3, with a pair of ninth-inning runs.

The Knights were down to their last out when Braves closer Craig Kimbrell fanned Rob Hudson for the final out. He reached first, however, on a dropped third strike. Alejandro De Aza then drew a walk to tie the game before Buck Coats worked out a game-winning walk in a 10-pitch at-bat.

Randy Williams earned the victory after throwing a scoreless ninth inning. He was one of four relievers who kept the Braves off the board after Brandon Hynick allowed three runs in five innings.
Birmingham AA
Christian Marreros RBI single in the eighth inning lifted the Barons to a 4-3 victory over Huntsville Thursday night.

Marrero had two hits and two RBIs but the latter of the two put Greg Infante in position to win his second game. Anthony Carter pitched a scoreless ninth for his 20th save.
In other action, Bristol at Bluefield was postponed because of weather, Hickorys game at Kannapolis was postponed because of weather and Winston-Salems twinbill with Salem was post-poned because the field was deemed unplayable as a result of rain. Orem scored twice in the bottom of the ninth and defeated Great Falls, 8-7. Nelson Curry not only blew the save but took the loss after allowing both runs. Mike Blanke had a hit and an RBI for the Voyagers.
CUBSIowa AAA
Matt Camps two-run double capped a ninth-inning rally Thursday night as Iowa squeaked by Sacramento, 7-5, at Raley Field.

Robinson Chirinos negotiated a two-out walk and then went to third as Marquez Smith reached on an error. Camp then doubled them home off Justin James to break a 5-5 tie. Camp finished with four RBIs. Brian Schlitter earned the victory after tossing two no-hit innings. He also extended his scoreless inning streak to six over his last four appearances.
Tennessee AA
Russ Canzler brought home Tony Thomas in the bottom of the 10th on a fielders choice Thursday night to lift Tennessee past Mississippi, 5-4, at Smokies Park.

The Braves held a 4-0 lead before the Smokies rallied for four runs in the sixth. Matt Spencers two-run homer capped the outburst and set the stage for the 10th inning action. Brandon Guyer saw his hitting streak come to an end at 18 games.

Kyle Smit, whom the Cubs picked up from the Dodgers at the trading deadline, improved to 3-0 with Tennessee by pitching three hitless innings. TyRelle Harris, whom Chicago acquired earlier in the week from the Braves, pitched two scoreless innings in his Cub debut.

In other action, Peoria saw its four-game winning streak fall by the wayside as Burlington earned a 7-2 victory at OBrien Field. Justin Bour had three hits and an RBI, snapping a 28 at-bat streak without driving in a run. Despite a big effort on the mound from Brooks Raley, Daytona dropped a 3-1 decision at Dunedin, dropping the Cubs two games behind Tampa in the Florida State Leagues North Division. Raley allowed four hits over 5 13 scoreless innings and left with a 1-0 lead before the pen allowed three seventh-inning runs. Mark Reed had a pair of hits for the Cubs. Pin-Chieh Chen had two hits and two RBIs to lead the AZL Cubs to a 6-3 victory over the Athletics. Alvaro Sosa tossed 3 13 scoreless, no-hit innings to pick up the win.

Kevin Czerwinski can be reached at ktczerwinski@gmail.com.

SportsTalk Live Podcast: Chris Sale returns to Chicago

sale-stlpod.jpg
USA TODAY

SportsTalk Live Podcast: Chris Sale returns to Chicago

In this episode of the SportsTalk Live Podcast, Mark Carman (WGN Radio), Chris Hine (Chicago Tribune) and Seth Gruen (Bleacher Report) join Mark Schanowski on the panel.

Chris Sale is back in town. Do the White Sox miss their old ace?

Meanwhile, Jake Arrieta’s agent defends his client’s velocity drop. Does he have a point?

Plus LeBron James talks about his legacy, Tiger Woods’ fall from grace continues and the panel remembers legendary sportswriter Frank Deford.

Listen to the full episode at this link or in the embedded player below:

Is the White Sox run differential a sign of better things to come?

Is the White Sox run differential a sign of better things to come?

From a record standpoint, the White Sox are maybe slightly above where most expected them to be this season.

From a run differential standpoint, the White Sox are way above any expectation.

After Monday’s 5-4 win against the Red Sox, the White Sox improved to 24-26 on the season. Impressively, the Sox have a plus-28 run differential, which is good for third-best in the American League.

The two AL teams higher than the White Sox in the category are both first-place teams. Houston is 36-16 with a whopping plus-74 differential while the Yankees are 29-19 and come in at plus-57.

The White Sox have the best run differential in the AL Central. The division-leading Twins (26-21) actually have a negative run differential at minus-7. The Twins are one of two teams with a negative run differential and a winning record (Baltimore is 26-23 with a minus-6 differential).

There are 15 teams in Major League Baseball with positive run differentials and the White Sox are the only team in that group more than one game under .500.

So what does that mean? Well, for one it could be a positive sign that the White Sox are actually a better team than their record. More plainly, it means the White Sox are winning games by bigger margins than they are losing them.

Monday’s win improved the White Sox record in one-run games to 5-7. The Sox are also 2-4 in two-run games and 3-5 in three-run games. That's a 10-16 mark in games decided by three runs or less. Meanwhile, in games decided by four runs or more the White Sox are 14-10.

What’s even stranger about the lack of success in close games is that the White Sox have the fourth best ERA among relievers in MLB.

May isn’t quite over yet so things can still even out in one direction or another, but these are certainly some odd numbers.