CLEVELAND — Tony La Russa’s worst nightmare played out Wednesday afternoon at Progressive Field.
With the White Sox playing three games in 24 hours against the Guardians thanks to two straight postponements, La Russa knew he needed some length out of Dallas Keuchel, Chicago’s starter in Game 1 of a doubleheader.
What he got was the opposite. Keuchel was unable to get an out in the second inning, and the White Sox committed four errors behind him en route to an 11-1 loss to the Guardians in the opener.
“I’d describe the beginning as the manager not having his team ready to play, and I take the heat for that,” La Russa said. “If there’s an off day. you’ve got to push the club, and I didn’t do that like I should.”
The White Sox defensive struggles started early. Errors by Tim Anderson and Jake Burger allowed the Guardians’ first two runners to reach in the first, with Myles Straw scoring on a fielder’s choice by Amed Rosario.
Things went from bad to worse in the second inning. After Gabriel Arias reached on Anderson’s error — his second in as many innings — the Guardians rattled off four straight singles before José Ramírez blew the game open with a 386-foot grand slam to make it 7-0.
After three more singles and another Anderson error — marking the second three-error game of the shortstop’s career — Keuchel was pulled without recording an out in the second inning. It was the fourth time in his career that he couldn’t get an out in the second, and the first time he allowed 10 runs in one start.
“There’s really nothing to say,” Keuchel said. “I watched it back on film, and it wasn’t any better.”
Tanner Banks was one of the few bright spots for the White Sox, as the 30-year-old rookie threw four perfect innings, striking out two. Banks threw a good mix of fastballs, sliders and changeups, with his fastball sitting around 93 mph. Matt Foster threw a scoreless inning, and Anderson Severino allowed a run in two innings.
“They came up and did outstanding,” La Russa said of his bullpen.