White Sox’ Dylan Cease brings his A game — again — in latest start vs. Rangers

Dylan Cease pitches in the first inning against the Rangers at Globe Life Field on August 05, 2022 in Arlington, Texas. (Getty Images)


ARLINGTON, Texas — In this topsy turvy White Sox season that swerves off the path of sustained success whenever it seems to get moving in the right direction, there is Dylan Cease, staff ace.

Cease has never wavered. If you can’t recall the last time he had a bad start, it’s because it was a long time ago. May 24 against Boston when he gave up seven runs, to be precise.

Since then, Cease had given up four earned runs in 12 starts to the tune of a 0.59 ERA. The American League Pitcher of the Month in June and July, Cease made his first start of August Friday against the Texas Rangers, trying to prop his team up after a loss the night before that opened an important road trip.

“The biggest thing is just, we’ve got to bring a little bit more of our A game more consistently,” Cease said this week. “We’ve had a lot of days where one side of the ball will click and the other won’t. Really, everyone, we’ve just got to focus, step up and have some grit and show how much we want it.”

Cease, somehow snubbed for the All-Star Game, took a 11-4 record, 2.01 ERA and four-game winning streak into Friday’s game, ranking second the major leagues in strikeouts per nine innings (12.42) and third in ERA and strikeouts (161).

“I’m just trying to do the same thing every start, really,” Cease said. “The biggest emphasis and focus for me is what I have to actually execute. I try not to get carried away with anything other than, ‘Hey, what’s my focus today?’ I try to visualize it, try to focus on it. I think that’s maybe where consistency comes from. I’m just trying to take the ball every day, execute pitches, be stable and be someone that can be relied on.”

Cease had to adjust early against the Rangers Friday, when his command eluded him during a first inning that included two walks and an RBI single by Adolis Garcia. After he walked Marcus Semien with two out and a runner on in the second, Cease retired the next 13 batters and called it a night.

At 91 pitches, Cease was pulled after six innings of one-run ball that lowered his ERA to 1.98. He walked three, struck out five and gave up two hits, both singles.

During the stretch, the Sox tied the game on Seby Zavala’s sacrifice fly to medium deep center against Rangers starter Glenn Otto and went ahead on Eloy Jimenez’ homer to left center in the fourth.

The Sox had chances to widen the margin when slumping Yasmani Grandal led off the fifth with a double and Luis …read more

Source:: Chicago Sun Times


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