The White Sox were playing such good baseball against contending teams such as the Texas Rangers and Kansas City Royals the past week.
Then, the Astros came to U.S. Cellular Field on Monday night, and the Sox appeared to play down to the level of competition.
In a sloppy game on both sides, the White Sox rallied from a 6-1 deficit to take an 8-7 lead in the sixth inning, but Houston answered and came away with a 10-8 victory.
With the bases loaded and two outs in the bottom of the ninth inning, Avisail Garcia took a called third strike from Jordan Lyles to end it.
The Astros (44-86) -- who hit 5 home runs (3 off starter Andre Rienzo, 2 off closer Addison Reed) -- have the worst record in baseball, while the Sox are third worst at 54-76.
There were a combined 27 hits, 3 errors, 7 walks, 3 wild pitches, a balk and bad baserunning galore.
"You just have to chalk it up to a bad night," said White Sox manager Robin Ventura. "I'm not going to judge anybody by tonight. They played us tough down there (at Houston in June), and they were swinging the bats tonight.
"Record aside, they're going out and playing hard."
So, why was White Sox bench coach Mark Parent ejected from Sunday's game against the Rangers before the game started?
Parent went out to home plate for the lineup-card exchange, got into an argument with umpire Jerry Layne, and was gone before the first pitch.
"We had a disagreement," Parent said Monday. "It got out of hand and (Layne) decided to throw me out."
Oftentimes, it can feel good to vent.
"It always does, but it still costs you money when you do that," Parent said. "I didn't feel bad about it when it was over. I felt bad I wasn't out here to help (manager) Robin (Ventura) and the club. But I thought it was something I needed to say."
Parent declined to offer specifics but said his dispute with Layne started Saturday night and carried over to Sunday.
Good to go:
Avisail Garcia was back in the lineup Monday after making an early exit Sunday.
Garcia ran into the right-field fence in the fourth inning against the Rangers, and he appeared to slam his head and right shoulder. Looking woozy walking off the field Sunday, Garcia said he was "better" before playing against the Astros.
Manager Robin Ventura didn't hesitate putting Garcia back in the lineup.
"If it was a concussion-type thing, he wouldn't be back in there," Ventura said. "It was more of dehydration. They've got him feeling good, and he might have to go to the bathroom a lot tonight because he'll probably be drinking a lot of water. But he says he feels fine."