La Russa on hearing critics in home crowd: At least White Sox fans care
During Tuesday night 7-6 win over the Blue Jays that ran 12 innings, White Sox manager Tony La Russa was hearing it from the home crowd again.
After pulling starting pitcher Dylan Cease following 6 flawless innings, bringing in Jimmy Lambert and Davis Martin from the bullpen and seeing Toronto erase a 2-0 lead and pull in front 4-2, fans at Guaranteed Rate began chanting: "Fire Tony" like they did during the Sox's last homestand.
In the 11th inning, fans were yelling at La Russa to intentionally walk Jays slugger Vladimir Guerrero Jr. with runners on second and third and two outs.
"I don't think they like walks?" La Russa joked Wednesday morning, in reference to his ill-fated decision to give Trea Turner an intentional pass on a 1-2 count in an 11-9 loss to the Dodgers on June 9.
While he said he's too focused on the game and doesn't hear the crowd, La Russa isn't losing any sleep over hostility from White Sox fans.
"I've said this 100 times, I like that they're here and they care," the 77-year-old Hall of Fame manager said. "If they're displeased and it's with me, I'd rather them be here and care than not care and not be here."
In and out:
Even though he's dealing with a sore hip and is having trouble running, Jose Abreu played in Wednesday's loss to the Blue Jays.
Abreu was the designated hitter and Andrew Vaughn replaced him at first base.
"I think his hip is bothering him some," manager Tony La Russa said. "He's had that all year. He wouldn't have played first base today. But the DH spot was open and (hitting coach) Frank (Menechino) feels he can swing."
After missing three weeks with a groin strain and playing the first two games against Toronto after coming off the injured list, shortstop Tim Anderson was held out Wednesday.
"This is a good day for him," La Russa said. "My cop-out is, this is a doctor required day off. I don't mind taking the heat for the decision. This is one he should not play,"
In Tuesday night's 7-6 win over Toronto that ran 12 innings, Sox starter Dylan Cease was brilliant while allowing only 1 hit and matching his career high with 11 strikeouts over 6 scoreless innings.
Known for his big fastball, Cease completely shut down a potent Blue Jays offense with what he said was one of the best sliders he's had in 72 career starts.
"I would rank that probably No. 1," Cease said. "It's something that I've been working on. Just figuring out, basically, where to start it. It was clicking from the beginning, it was pretty solid.
"I think the command with it, being able to get it to that down and away quadrant consistently, I just think as a hitter it's hard to lay off that."
Before Wednesday afternoon's game against vs. Toronto, the White Sox reinstated Matt Foster from the Bereavement List and optioned right-handed pitcher Davis Martin to Class AAA Charlotte.
Foster relieved Lucas Giolito and pitched 1⅔ innings vs. the Blue Jays, giving up a 2-run homer to right fielder Teoscar Hernandez in the seventh.
In 5 games (2 starts) with the Sox, Martin is 1-2 with a 4.29 ERA.