Game 8: Almost Perfect
GLENDALE, Ariz. – The White Sox threw a perfect game against the Reds in their 4-0 victory Saturday. Well, perfect for 3 2/3 innings until Joey Votto doubled off of second pitcher in Hector Santiago, because of course the starting pitcher, Jose Quintana, wasn’t going over his limit during Cactus League start No. 1. Here’s a look at the game.
HOME RUN: Quintana couldn’t have done much more over three perfect innings. He only went to a pair of three-ball counts and needed just 39 pitches to get through three innings.
“You get our pitchers going out there, the guys you are familiar seeing, and Quintana goes out and looks great,” White Sox manager Robin Ventura said. “He looks fresh and it’s nice to see him go out there and continue.”
TRIPLE: A couple of different aspects of Jared Mitchell’s game were on display Saturday. He blooped a double into center in the second off of Bronson Arroyo and his great speed left him with serious designs on third even though the ball didn’t bounce too far away, before he pulled up at second. And in the fourth, the left-handed hitter launched an opposite-field shot to left-center.
“You’re giving a guy like him that playing time and let him see what he can do and Mitch is a strong kid,” Ventura said. “You look at the tools that are there and there are a lot of tools to work with. He starts adding that in. It’s just a plus.”
DOUBLE: Conor Gillaspie produced his second homer in Cactus League action and his seventh RBI. He also played first without an issue, adding to his versatility.
SINGLE: The young middle infield combination of Carlos Sanchez and Marcus Semien each knocked out a hit, with Sanchez driving in a run. Jeff Keppinger returned defensively to third base, and Brent Morel handled two chances flawlessly as the starting shortstop for the day.
STOLEN BASE: Let’s give this honor to a fan late in the game who started a one-man chant of ‘Let’s Go Sox.’ When nobody joined in, he added “I don’t hear anybody else” and then the rest of the fans picked up the cheer.
CALLED THIRD: Quintana set the tone for the day with his three innings, but Santiago followed up strong. He allowed two walks and one hit over two scoreless innings, approaching this appearance like another start, even though he came in after Quintana.
JUST A BIT OUTSIDE: The Reds stole two bases, and Josh Phegley was charged with a passed ball. Very minor hiccups in an otherwise strong day for the White Sox.