John Danks’ effort wasted in White Sox’ 2-1 loss to Royals
BY DARYL VAN SCHOUWEN firstname.lastname@example.org July 20, 2011 10:48PM
John Danks has a right to smile. He blanked the Royals over seven innings in his first start since coming off the disabled list. | Jamie Squire~Getty Images
Updated: October 27, 2011 12:32AM
KANSAS CITY, Mo. — That’s going to leave a mark.
After an 11-inning, 2-1 loss to the last-place Kansas City Royals on Wednesday night, White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen — a shiner developing on his right cheekbone from a foul ball that struck him in the dugout — said he’s done protecting his players.
Questioning his players’ approach at the plate, their energy and the way they “went about their business” during a three-game series in which the Royals took two games, Guillen’s profanity-laced postgame meeting with reporters in his office was to the point.
“Nothing more painful than losing the f---ing game against Bruce Chen once again,’’ Guillen said. “That’s more painful than this one. F---ing pathetic. No f---ing energy. We just go through the motions. We take the day off instead of [today, a day off].’’
Seven scoreless innings from John Danks, making his first start since he strained an oblique muscle June 25, went down the drain when Sergio Santos’ low-and-away slider went off catcher A.J. Pierzynski’s glove for a wild pitch, scoring Alex Gordon from third. Billly Butler swung and missed at the pitch for strike two.
“I thought I did everything right; it just hit the heel of my glove and kicked to the right,’’ Pierzynski said.
It wasn’t the momentum-builder the Sox wanted going into a weekend series in Cleveland. The Sox trail the Indians and Tigers by 4½ games.
“If we go to Cleveland and play the way we did in Kansas City, it’s going to be a dead-ass July,’’ Guillen said.
The Sox (47-51) were held to five hits, including a home run by Carlos Quentin against the soft-tossing lefty Chen, who lowered his ERA to 3.30 by allowing four hits in eight innings.
“Nothing against Bruce Chen, I have a lot of respect for this kid,’’ Guillen said. “But our approach at the plate, that’s not a good club out there. F--- it. I’m tired of protecting people.’’
When the Sox won two of three in Detroit after the All-Star break over the weekend, Guillen praised his team for its energy and promised a fun season if it continued to play that way.
“I take back what I said in Detroit,’’ he said. “This thing is one day at a time. One day we’re good, three days we’re bad. We don’t have energy in the dugout. Horsesh-- approach at the plate for the 90th time.
“If we go to Cleveland the way we go here, good luck. Then play New York, Boston and Detroit. . . . We’re wasting our money on this club if we go to Cleveland the way we were here. That’s all we have to say.
“The way we go about our business here, horsesh--. [The players] can say whatever they want to say.’’
“I thought we played well; we just didn’t get any hits,’’ Pierzynski said. “I mean, Chen pitched pretty good, and their bullpen has been strong for them all year. We didn’t have a whole lot of chances. We hit into some double plays [three] and scored one run. When you get five hits in 11 innings, it’s going to look that way.’’
Asked about Guillen’s take on the Sox’ approach at the plate, Pierzynski said, “You’ll have to ask him; I don’t know. Talk to him about that.’’
Paul Konerko gave Chen credit.
“Bruce Chen is pretty good; I don’t know why he has a label of not being a good pitcher,’’ said Konerko, who compared Chen’s outing to a Mark Buehrle-type performance.
“No team is going to have energy every single day. You need to figure out how to get wins on those days. It’s tough. That’s the way it is. It’s not Opening Day every day, and you have to figure out on those days where you’re dragging how to get through.’’