Friday, July 30, 2004

Still not time for Sox to panic

After the Sox dropped a 5-4 game to the Tigers Friday night, they found themselves still only 4 games behind the Twins, who lost their Friday matchup to Boston 8-2. The Indians beat the Royals 7-6 to climb to within a half game of the Sox.

After losing six straight, these would seem like dire times for Chicago. Compounded with Minnesota going 9-1 its last 10 games, the Sox have lost five games in the standings during that 10-game span.

But it’s still not time to panic.

The last three games in the current Sox skid have all been one-run losses. Given the fluky elements of winning or losing a game by a single run, there’s no reason to throw in the towel.

And there’s no arguing that the last three losses haven’t had a fluky feel. A loss on Wednesday because of poor baserunning. Not many times will two guys get nabbed to lead off an inning. Another on Thursday because of an error late in the game. Jose Valentin, who made the error, usually doesn’t misplay that kind of ball. And then Friday when the winning run was walked in for a walk-off free pass by a usually reliable reliever.

That’s not to say the Sox can continue to play sloppy and expect to walk to a division title. Not with their two most powerful bats on the bench. But this run of bad luck should end soon.

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