Thome drives in another nail

Thome drives in another nail

Posted by scotgreg on Sun, 09/12/2010 - 12:44
It's about 30 minutes before first pitch, and there are maybe 2,000 people in the stands at U.S. Cellular Field. That's about all you need to know about the White Sox at this late stage of the season _ they are hard to watch right now. Last night's miserable loss to the Royals, coupled with the Twins' win at Cleveland, leaves the Sox 6 games off the pace with 20 to play. Minnesota's magic number is down to 15, and even if the White Sox sweep the first-place Twins in a three-game home series that starts Tuesday, they'd still be in bad shape. Here are some notes before Lucas Harrell makes the start against the Royals. *Jim Thome did it again Saturday night. His solo home run in the 12th inning was the difference in Minnesota's 1-0 win over the Indians, and it was Thome's fifth HR in his last four games. "We got beat by one of the greatest home run hitters this game has ever seen," Cleveland manager Manny Acta said. That is certainly true, and Thome now ranks eighth all-time with 587 career home runs. Naturally, Ozzie was again asked about the decision to not sign Thome in the off-season. "My conscience is very clear," Ozzie said. "If people, like I say, want to blame me, blame me. We had Jim here for four years and I always say I'm the luckiest manager ever in the history of baseball because I had him. He went another way. Good for them. If it wasn't Jim, it could have been someone else. If (Nick) Punto hit the home run, I would have been 'God, I can't believe it.' If Jim hit the home run, good for them. I have no regrets." *Carlos Quentin is out of the lineup for the second straight game, and he is 0-for-13 in his last four. What are the White Sox going to do with this guy? You have to give Quentin some major credit for driving in 82 runs in 120 games while batting .236. But looking ahead, is he a guy you want on the roster? Quentin has been playing with a sore knee lately, and he's always getting hit by pitches so the health issue is never going away. Defensively, he's as bad as it gets in right field. Remember the 6 HR he hit in four games in July? That talent is there, but so are a lot of questions. *How bad has the White Sox' offense been at the most important time of the season? Real bad. The White Sox are hitting .173 with 11 runs scored in their last five games, and they are 5-for-29 with runners in scoring position. Here are today’s lineups: White Sox Pierre -- LF Vizquel -- 3B Rios -- CF Konerko -- 1B M. Ramirez -- DH Pierzynski -- C Teahen -- RF A. Ramirez -- SS Beckham -- 2B Harrell -- RHP Royals Blanco -- CF Maier -- RF Butler -- DH Ka'aihue -- 1B Betemit -- 3B Gordon -- LF Pena -- C Getz -- 2B Betancourt -- SS O'Sullivan -- RHP
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