Globe iconLogin iconRecap iconSearch iconTickets icon
news

MLB News

Lopez's rough first sinks White Sox in Seattle

MLB.com @scottmerkin

SEATTLE -- There have been times this season when White Sox right-hander Reynaldo Lopez looked like an ace on the mound.

People have marveled at his makeup and chutzpah while pitching, not giving in during the toughest of situations or even when the pitch count rises late in outings. There have been other stretches during Lopez's 20 starts where he's looked like a 24-year-old developing with the rest of this critical mass at the core of the White Sox rebuild.

View Full Game Coverage

SEATTLE -- There have been times this season when White Sox right-hander Reynaldo Lopez looked like an ace on the mound.

People have marveled at his makeup and chutzpah while pitching, not giving in during the toughest of situations or even when the pitch count rises late in outings. There have been other stretches during Lopez's 20 starts where he's looked like a 24-year-old developing with the rest of this critical mass at the core of the White Sox rebuild.

View Full Game Coverage

Seattle's 8-2 victory over the White Sox on Sunday at Safeco Field showed a little bit of both sides from Lopez. He struggled in the first inning, allowing five runs on a cumbersome 35 pitches. But to his credit, Lopez shut down a team with a 60-40 record over the next four innings, giving the White Sox a chance to come back against Marco Gonzales.

Video: CWS@SEA: Engel singles to break up no-hitter in 6th

"He kept us in the game," White Sox manager Rick Renteria said. "Again, had trouble with some base-on-balls today. Tried to find his zone. You could see he was leaving pitches out over the plate a bit. He got roughed around, but settled down.

"Ended up benefiting from some first-pitch outs that gave him some more pitches to work with. It really wasn't his day today, but he got us through five and did enough to at least keep us in the ballgame."

That first inning was an interesting one for Lopez, with Ryon Healy's three-run homer -- featuring a 106.3 mph exit velocity, per Statcast™ -- emerging as the only hard-hit ball of the frame. Lopez gave up an infield hit to Jean Segura, walked Mitch Haniger and then yielded Nelson Cruz's single off of a leaping first baseman Jose Abreu's glove, loading the bases.

Kyle Seager walked to force in a run, followed by Denard Span's sacrifice fly and Healy's blast. This five-run outburst started after Lopez retired Dee Gordon on one pitch to begin his outing.

"I was feeling good throwing in the bullpen. I was feeling good warming up and then I started the game and I retired the first batter with one pitch," said Lopez through interpreter Billy Russo. "Then, I don't know exactly what happened.

"That's something I need to get better on. But sometimes you can't explain why things happen. Like I said, I felt really good, but I don't know. After that first out, I don't know exactly what happened."

Lopez walked four and struck out just one over five innings and 89 pitches, recording four swing-and-misses in total and topping out at 96.7 mph with the fastball. In his last six starts, Lopez has allowed 23 earned runs on 39 hits over 34 1/3 innings to raise his ERA from 3.35 to 4.13. In that span, he fanned 26, walked 17 and given up six home runs.

Gonzales carried a no-hitter into the sixth against the White Sox before Adam Engel's two-out, infield single. Tim Anderson followed with a two-run shot to left, his 14th this season, leaving him four away from a career-high and six homers shy of a 20 homer/20 stolen-base campaign.

Video: CWS@SEA: Anderson cranks a 2-run homer to left-center

MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
Two, the unusual way: With runners on first and third and one out in the third for Seattle, the White Sox were able to turn an inning-ending double play. This double play, if you were scoring at home, went 5-2-5-1-6-7. Span broke for home from third on Mike Zunino's grounder and was eventually tagged out by Anderson in the rundown. Anderson turned and fired a strike to left fielder Leury Garcia, covering at third, who tagged out Healy to complete the play.

Video: CWS@SEA: White Sox team up for DP after rundown

SOUND SMART
Lopez is 2-6 with a 4.95 ERA on the road this season, compared to 2-2 with a 3.17 ERA at home. His 51 walks rank fourth highest in the American League.

HE SAID IT
"Staying focused is something that's going to be very, very important for him moving forward. We've seen him where he looks lights out and unhittable. Today wasn't that day." -- Renteria, on Lopez

UP NEXT
The White Sox begin a four-game series against the Angels in Anaheim on Monday night with a first pitch scheduled for 9:07 p.m. CT. Lucas Giolito (6-8, 6.18 ERA) is scheduled to make his 20th start of the season, the 10th on the road and his first against the Angels. Giolito Is 3-4 with a 4.97 ERA, 26 strikeouts and a .237 opponents' average in nine starts on the road this season. The Angels counter with Jaime Barria (5-6, 3.55 ERA).

Scott Merkin has covered the White Sox for MLB.com since 2003. Follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin and Facebook and listen to his podcast.

Chicago White Sox, Reynaldo Lopez