Team unity has been working for White Sox
BY DARYL VAN SCHOUWEN email@example.com September 20, 2012 12:18AM
KANSAS CITY, MO - SEPTEMBER 19: Alejandro De Aza #30 of the Chicago White Sox slides into third after hitting a triple against the Kansas City Royals in the third inning at Kauffman Stadium on September 19, 2012 in Kansas City, Missouri. (Photo by Ed Zurga/Getty Images)
sox at royals
The facts: 7:10, Ch. 26, 670-AM.
The starters: Francisco Liriano (6-11, 5.24 ERA) vs. Jeremy Guthrie (7-12, 4.92).
Updated: October 21, 2012 3:05PM
KANSAS CITY, Mo. — All for one, one for all.
Say this about the White Sox: Whether they win the American League Central or are caught by the Detroit Tigers, they’ll do it together.
Billy Martin’s Yankees they are not.
“The thing that stands out about this team is the cohesiveness from the top to bottom,’’ Sox right-hander Jake Peavy said. “From the staff to the 25th man, guys genuinely caring about each other and that translating from the dugout and out to the field.
“Everyone has truly been on the same page pulling as hard as we can in one direction. No matter what’s come up on or off the field, this team has stood beside each other through thick and thin. I hadn’t been on many teams that are as close as this one.’’
Unity is not a prerequisite for winning, as the 1970s Yankees teams and others proved. But in this Sox team’s case, it hasn’t hurt
“The greatest thing going on in this clubhouse is they don’t want to let anybody down,’’ third-base coach Joe McEwing said. “It’s a tribute to them. Not only with hitting, pitching and fielding but baserunning-wise they’re getting outstanding secondary leads, being aggressive on balls in the dirt and putting guys in position to be successful for the next guy to knock them in.’’
Playoff tickets on sale
Tickets to potential AL wild-card and division series games at U.S. Cellular Field go on sale at noon Friday at whitesox.com, by phone at 866-SOX-GAME and at all Ticketmaster locations. There is a limit of six tickets per person.
Prices for wild-card and division series games: lower box, $65; lower reserved/bleachers/upper deck box, $60; and upper deck reserved, $45.
The best-of-five ALDS begins Oct. 6 and Oct. 7. If the Sox win the division, they likely would play the winner of the AL East and be seeded lower. The lower seed plays the first two games at home, with Games 3, 4 and 5 hosted by the higher seed.
New life for Floyd
Manager Robin Ventura and pitching coach Don Cooper liked how the ball came out of Gavin Floyd’s hand in his seven-inning, 78-pitch win against the Royals on Tuesday. It was obvious that Floyd’s stint on the disabled list added life to his arm.
“Yeah, it’s a little sharper,’’ Ventura said. “You watch him throw, and it looks different. You see his mannerisms on the mound, and he looks confident when he gets the ball back, like he’s in control of what he’s doing.’’
This and that
Backup catcher Tyler Flowers gave A.J. Pierzynski a rest against lefty Bruce Chen, even though Pierzynski has good numbers against Chen. Alex Rios may rest Thursday.
“We’re going to need A.J. going down the stretch,’’ Ventura said. “We’re going to make sure he’s fresh and ready to play, and Tyler has to stay sharp as well, so it’s a good time to do it.’’
◆ Fox picked up the game against the Rays on Sept. 29, changing the first pitch from 6:10 to 3:05 p.m..
◆ Rios’ tiebreaking homer Tuesday was his eighth lead-changer, tying him with the Orioles’ Adam Jones for most in the majors.
◆ The Sox’ bullpen owned a 0.60 ERA over the last five games entering Wednesday. The pen allowed 26 runs in the previous five games.