Chicago — The lessons never stop coming in this game, especially at the major-league level. Rookie Akil Baddoo had a couple of teachable moments in one critical inning Sunday as the Tigers lost the series finale to the White Sox, 3-0.
Baddoo, who started in left field, had two plays go awry in the three-run second. He made a herculean diving effort to run down a slicing drive by Adam Eaton down the left-field line. But after he slid into the padding, he didn’t immediately get up to chase the ball.
It was if he thought it was foul.
Eaton jogged into third with one out. After an RBI single by Andrew Vaughn, Nick Madrigal poked a single to left. Baddoo, who had to range to his right to flag it down, had only one play and that was to throw the ball into second, keeping Madrigal at first.
Instead, he threw the ball into the middle of the infield, giving Madrigal a free run into second.
Both runners scored on a single by Tim Anderson.
That was all the damage the White Sox did against Jose Urena, who gutted out five innings. It was his first start since May 23 after a stint on the injured list (forearm cramp). His stuff might have been a little rusty, but there was nothing wrong with his compete level.
He needed 62 pitches to get through the first three innings. He walked two and had five three-ball counts. But things clicked back in for the fourth and fifth. He got four groundball outs in those two innings, a sign that his sinker was back on point.
But those three runs had an insurmountable feel to them, mostly because right-hander Dylan Cease was doing what he typically does against the Tigers — shutting them down.
He is now 7-0 against Detroit in his career and he hasn’t allowed a run in two starts this season. After a seven-inning complete-game shutout in the second game of a double-header on April 29, Cease blanked the Tigers over seven innings again Sunday.
He struck out nine in the first start, 10 in this one. The Tigers, who struck out 14 times in the game, took five called third strikes.
The closest the Tigers came to scoring off Cease came in the fifth when Niko Goodrum hit a long fly ball that was headed to the seats in right center. But Adam Engel, just activated off the injured list, tracked it to the wall, timed his leap perfectly, reached over the wall and brought the ball back.
Right-hander Jason Foley, purchased from Triple-A Toledo earlier on Sunday, pitched an adventurous scoreless sixth inning in his big-league debut. He hit a pair of Adams, Eaton and Engel, but he escaped the inning by getting Madrigal to line out to right and Anderson to ground out.
As advertised, his two-seam fastball was electric, sitting at 97 and touching 99 mph.
The Tigers (24-35) went 2-4 on this two-city trip.
Our special thanks to:detroitnews.com