Friday, August 17, 2012

Royals 4 White Sox 2: Mistakes Were Made

It's been a while since Robin Ventura gave me any real reason to second guess him, but he made up for lost time tonight.

I wasn't a fan of Robin intentionally walking Jeff Francoeur twice, even if it worked out in the Sox' favor both times. One of my favorite things about Ventura this season is the way he hasn't given opponents a free base on a regular basis.

That was a staple of Ozzie's the last few years that I didn't like.

Then when Robin did it the third time, it finally bit the Sox in the ass.

Robin had Jesse Crain warming up in the bullpen during the seventh inning in case Chris Sale got into trouble.  Things started well enough when Tony Abreu grounded out, but then Mike Moustakas singled and Alcides Escobar singled to put runners at the corners with 3 outs.

Robin then left Sale in to face Alex Gordon, which is fine. There was no lefty ready, and though Gordon had good numbers against Sale, he's also struck out twice. He'd strike out a third time.

But then the what the fuck happened.

I have to assume Crain was warming in the pen in case things got to Billy Butler, and he was definitely warm for Billy Butler. But instead of facing Billy Butler, Ventura decided to intentionally walk him.

"Okay, I don't like this, but if you'd rather have Crain face Salvador Perez I guess I can understand, I mean, Butler has homered tonight and has killed us historically....wait....why is? He's leaving Chris Sale in to face Salvador Perez!?"

The same Salvador Perez that had doubled off Sale earlier, and also smoked a line drive that would have been another double if Alexei Ramirez hadn't displayed the vertical to rob him of it.

The same Perez that came into the game with a .357 average and 1.116 OPS against lefties this season.

Perez would double, two runs would score, and then Jesse Crain would finally come in the game.

Those two runs were the difference in this game, and though Chris Sale gave it up and he also allowed those two solo shots to Billy Butler and Lorenzo Cain, I have to place this loss squarely on the shoulders of Robin tonight.

Why the hell have Crain get warm if you're not going to use him?


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