But this one brought an end to what turned out to be the final loss in a second straight season the Tribe was unable to win 70 games for the first time since modern expansion in 1961.
With a roster spot open, the Sox then called up outfielder Alejandro De Aza. He had an immediate impact with the Sox. In his first at bat of the season, De Aza hit a two-run homerun as the White Sox defeated the Tigers 2-1. John Danks struck out 10 in picking up his 4th win of the season and Santos got his 21st save. With the win, the Sox moved to 51-52, 1 1/2 games behind the Cleveland Indians and just 3 1/2 behind the Tigers. The Sox now get a day off in preparation for their big weekend series against the A.L. East leading Boston Red Sox. Gavin Floyd (8-9) will face Tim Wakefield (6-3).
Brad Ziegler finished the year with a 3.26 ERA, but that number doesn’t tell an honest truth. Ziegler struggled, taking a bullpen-high seven losses on the year, and his strikeout-to-walk ratio was downright mediocre: he struck out only 41 batters in 60 2/3 innings, while walking 28 batters. Putting that many batters on base with a free pass is a big problem for a reliever.
McCray, 25, may not have been on the Sox radar at the beginning of the season, but he is off to a 4-1 start with a 2.30 ERA and 1.024 WHIP. He was originally drafted in the 34th round by the “Devil” Rays in 2006 out of high school, in the 50th a year later by the Cardinals and ultimately signed with Chicago when he was taken in the 16th in 2010 from the University of Tennessee.
In the second, he retired David Wright on a groundout to third, struck out Carlos Gonzalez on an impressive slider, and got Yadier Molina on a fly out. Then in the third, struck out Troy Tulowitzki, got Michael Cuddyer on a weak ground out, and finally got Home run derby runner up Bryce Harper on a line out.
Sergio Santos emerged as the closer with set up help from Matt Thorton and Jesse Crain. sale jerseys and Brian Bruney have also been reliable arms in the bullpen.
12. New York Yankees – The Yankees deserve a lot of credit for hanging in the playoff race all season. Joe Girardi deserves AL Manager of the Year, and Mariano Rivera gets a tip of the cap for a tremendous career.