CHICAGO -- From Aug. 5 of last season to April 29 of this season, White Sox reliever Matt Albers did not allow a run.Albers recorded a career-long streak of 30 scoreless appearances covering 33 innings, the longest in franchise history. But in his last three appearances, including his inning in
CHICAGO -- From Aug. 5 of last season to April 29 of this season, White Sox reliever Matt Albers did not allow a run.
Albers recorded a career-long streak of 30 scoreless appearances covering 33 innings, the longest in franchise history. But in his last three appearances, including his inning in Tuesday's extra-innings loss to the Astros, he has yielded six runs on six hits over 2 2/3 innings and been handed three defeats.
These are drastically different results, but they are all part of the same short memory for Albers, who shakes off poor starts to be ready the next time out.
"Yeah, it's a little different, definitely," Albers said. "I haven't had that feeling of disappointment in a little while, but I knew it was going to come.
"Over a long season, you're going to have some little hiccups. So I just try not to change too much. Get back to what I was doing successfully."
Albers said he feels good, and that the ball feels good coming out of his hand. He believes that pitch selection in one or two instances cost him, but mostly that it's locating pitches that will make the difference.
"I've been in this game a while, so I've definitely gone through struggles before. You've just got to keep an even head," he said. "I've just kind of got to get over it, go back and look, [say], 'Why did that happen?' I just didn't execute pitches.
"I feel good, and I know I'm throwing strikes. I just have to execute a little bit better and get the ball down. That's the main thing for a sinkerball guy, getting the ball down. The main thing for me is just staying over the rubber a little bit and [making sure I] get the ball down."
Manager Robin Ventura doesn't see anything different from Albers between the good and bad times.
"Attitude-wise, he's still the same guy, and we're all in this together," Ventura said. "Everybody is picking each other up, and we feel like we're still going to win games."
Clarification on lack of interference call: Evan Gattis almost didn't get a chance to launch his game-winning homer off Albers in the 11th inning of Tuesday's 6-5 loss after it looked as if Carlos Correa could be called for interference during George Springer's steal of second. Correa struck out swinging but moved across the plate in the process, causing catcher Alex Avila to alter his throw.
According to Rule 6.01 (A)(5), if interference had been determined, Springer would have been ruled out and the inning would have been over. But even with Ventura voicing his displeasure, home-plate umpire Tony Randazzo didn't change the no-call.
"I just felt like he didn't hinder or impede [Avila's] throw to second base," Randazzo said prior to Wednesday's game.
Scott Merkin has covered the White Sox for MLB.com since 2003. Read his blog, Merk's Works, follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin, on Facebook and listen to his podcast.