While this game against the Tigers started out in a familiar fashion, the new ending was a pleasant development.
In the style of 2012, the Tigers jumped out to a 3-0 lead on the Sox in the third inning thanks to a couple of bloopers and broken bats. Then the usual sense of doom that accompanies watching a Sox/Tigers game came rolling in.
However, crazy things began happening afterward. The Sox would score 3 runs to tie it up in the bottom of the fourth, and then after the Tigers would retake the lead in the fifth, Alex Rios may have delivered the seminal play of the season.
With the bases loaded and one out Dayan Viciedo his a slow chopper to Jhonny Peralta at short. Peralta fielded the ball and fired to Omar Infante at second base, but along with the arrival of the ball came Alex Rios, who delivered a perfect take out slide, causing Infante's throw to hit the dirt ten feet in front of Prince Fielder and scoot right by the portly first baseman.
Two runs would score to give the Sox a 5-4 lead and the Tigers wouldn't get another hit over the final four innings, going 0-for-12.
Jose Quintana did not have a great start, but his bullpen came on to save him and possibly the White Sox season.
Nate Jones improved to 8-0 with 2.2 fantastic innings, and he was followed by Donnie Veal, Brett Myers, Matt Thornton and Addison Reed. The Tigers would pick up only 1 hit in 5 innings of relief from the bullpen, with no walks.
It was the kind of game we've been dying to see from the bullpen in the second half, and it couldn't have come at a better time.
There are still 16 games left to go, but I'd rather head into those final 16 games with a 3-game lead than a 1-game lead.