Tsunami Does It All, Norris Earns Four Out Save, Cards Sweep Sox 3-2
Tsunami wouldn’t record his first strikeout until the 4th inning today, but he very well may have displayed his best stuff today.
Carlos started his afternoon walking the Sox leadoff man, Moncada. Sánchez followed with a single to LF, putting two runners on. Now, we all know how lights out Carlos has been with runners on base, particularly RISP. Carlos would strand Moncada and Sánchez in scoring position, ending the inning on a García ground ball back to him on the mound.
Carlos would induce his first of two double-play balls in the 2nd inning, getting Palka to ground out 6-3.
The Cardinals bats wouldn’t produce any offense for the Cardinals ace. The only hit before the 6th inning would come from Yadi, an infield single. Yadi would advance to second on the play as Sánchez threw the ball past Abreu at first base. With Fowler at the plate, Yadi would be caught stealing third base and Fowler would later fly out to LF.
It was the Tsunami show now. Carlos would settle in and retire (13/14) of the next White Sox batters he faced. Carlos brought the sauce in the 4th inning, striking out the side after giving up a leadoff double to Abreu. After striking out Delmonico on a nasty changeup, Carlos would rear back and strikeout García and Narváez on 97mph fastballs, stranding Abreu at second.
Carlos has shown he likes throwing first pitch curveballs this year, especially to LH batters. As mentioned by @StlcupofJoe.
Carlos would throw six first-pitch curveballs today, five of which coming to LH batters. Of the six pitches, one produced an out, two were strikes, while the other three were balls. Carlos also would pound lefties inside today, as you saw the cutter a decent amount this afternoon.
The top of the order kicked off the bottom of the 4th for the Cardinals, striking out in order. If you’re keeping count, that’s six batters in-a-row going down via the punch out.
Tsunami would throw back-to-back 1-2-3 innings in the 5th and 6th. Recording his 4th and 5th strikeouts of the day, respectively. His strikeout of Giolito to end the 5th was my favorite of the outing, a slider that swept all the way across the zone into the left-handers box. Giolito offered at it and missed rather badly.
Going into the bottom of the 6th, we were still tied 0-0. Tsunami took matters into his own hands. With two outs, Carlos would swing at a first pitch fastball up in the zone and take it to deep (407 feet) to LCF for a solo HR, the first HR of his career. Carlos was greeted by Cafecíto with a hug before entering the dugout for the most epic conga line of the season. Nothing will beat a Tsunami conga, am I right?
Carlos would work his way out of a mini jam in the 7th, ending the inning with a huge 4-6-3 double play. Wong would make a smooth play and DeJong would make the easy transition over to Cafecíto.
The offense would finally give their ace some breathing room in the bottom of the 7th. With White Sox starter, Lucas Giolito still mowing along, Fowler would put an end to his day (and the White Sox technically.) Following a one out single to RF from Yadi, Fowler would come up with a huge 2-run HR to the grass patch in CF. Before going yard, Fowler was (4-44) his last 44 at bats. Hopefully this will get his bat rolling.
The White Sox wouldn’t go away, coming back to score two runs in the 8th. After getting an infield single, Anderson would steal second base with pinch-hitter Davidson up to bat. Carlos would get Davidson to fly out to RF, bringing his day to and end. Tsunami line: (7.1 IP, 5 hits, 1r/1er, 2bb, 5 k’s, 0 HBP, 72 game score)
Dominic Leone would make his second appearance in back-to-back games, making things pretty dicey. Leone would walk Moncada to bring the tying run to the plate. Sánchez would deliver, lacing an RBI single to LF, scoring Anderson and advancing Moncada to third. Moncada would appear to injure his left knee sliding into third and be lifted for a pinch-runner, Thompson. Abreu would bring Thompson home on a deep sac fly to Pham.
You know what comes next, the infamous four out save, from the Bud Chuck. Norris came in, picking up where he left off, striking out Delmonico looking on a 95 mph two-seam fastball that was painted on the outside corner to perfection.
Norris would start the 9th striking out Garcia on a two-seamer as well, also hitting 95 mph on the radar gun. Norris would complete the four out save, earning his 6th save of 2018, sweeping the two-game set with the White Sox.
The Cardinals (17-12) have an off-day tomorrow before hosting the Cubs (16-12) for a three-game weekend series. Miles Mikolas (3-0, 3.27) and José Quintana* (3-1, 5.74) will get the series started Friday night at 7:15 pm c/t.