White Sox’ hitting slump takes the cake, Dewayne Wise says
BY DARYL VAN SCHOUWEN firstname.lastname@example.org May 31, 2013 10:24PM
SOX AT A’S
The facts: 3:07 p.m., CSN, 670-AM, 97.5-FM.
The starters: Jose Quintana (3-2, 3.75 ERA) vs. Dan Straily (3-2, 5.08).
Updated: July 2, 2013 8:13AM
OAKLAND, Calif. — It’s June, and the time is now for the White Sox to get this derailed train back on track.
In fact, it has been time for a long, long time.
“We’ve been saying that for a while now,’’ veteran outfielder Dewayne Wise said Friday. “We have a spurt here and there where it looks like we’re the team we should be, but we hit the wall again. We’ve had a couple of series where we just look terrible. We know we’re better than we showed against the Cubs. We have to keep fighting.’’
Wise, 35, has seen team hitting slumps in his day, but the Sox’ first 34 games, in which they hit .227 and averaged 3.4 runs, takes the cake.
“I’ve been around,’’ Wise said, “but I don’t think I’ve ever seen anything like that first month. That was rough. I know it was rough to watch.’’
There are signs of life, but nothing overwhelming. The Sox were averaging 3.9 runs in their last 17 games, batting .265 during that stretch.
“We just have to go out and play hard, and if you can look yourself in the mirror and say you gave it 110 percent that night, that’s cool,’’ Wise said. “We just have to pick it up on the offensive side. We’re still close. We’re still in this thing.’’
Sox starting pitching, their strong suit, wilted against the Cubs after holding the team together for so long.
“You go through periods where you put so much stress on the pitching anyway,’’ manager Robin Ventura said. “Because of the way we’ve been hitting, when you don’t pitch, it’s magnified. It looks like you can’t pitch.’’
Before Friday’s game, Ventura characterized his team’s first two months as inconsistent.
“You go through a good [9-3] stretch and then you run into the last three games that we’ve had,’’ Ventura said.
‘‘The last three games, you didn’t pitch as well as you have been, and that just compounds everything.’’
Lineup stands pat
Ventura used his normal lineup and doesn’t figure to make wholesale changes soon. He again hinted that Alexei Ramirez could move up to the leadoff spot, though.
“You have to make sure they’re comfortable doing it and nobody overreacts to it,’’ he said.
Gordon Beckham went 1-for-5 with an RBI single for Class AAA Charlotte on Friday. Beckham, who played second base, is batting .344.
The only thing extending his rehab stint from hamate bone surgery is the soreness around his left wrist.
“Pain-wise, he’s still feeling something in his wrist when he’s playing,’’ Ventura said. “It’s nothing that’s going to break or hurt him more. It’s more on his level of pain tolerance, really. But, baseball-wise, he’s ready to go.’’