The Chicago White Sox won't be playing in the postseason this year, but can still end their season on a positive note. On Tuesday, they continue their season-ending three-game set with the Cleveland Indians at Progressive Field.
Chicago won Monday's opener with the Tribe, but was still eliminated from postseason contention with Detroit's win over Kansas City.
"I'm happy with these guys ... the work they put in and what they did," Robin Ventura said despite missing the postseason in his first season as White Sox manager. "The effort is all you can ask."
The White Sox had led the Tigers by as many as three games as late as Sept. 18, but a 2-10 stretch proved to be their demise.
"It's always frustrating, but I told everyone we should walk out of here with our heads held high," catcher A.J. Pierzynski said. "Nobody thought we would do anything this year, but to be in it until Oct. 1 and have a chance, we did everything we could. We don't have to look back and say we could have done this or we could have done that because at the end of the day, we gave everything we could and did everything we could possibly do. "We were in the position we wanted to be in and it just didn't work out."
On Monday, though, Hector Santiago fanned 10 over seven shutout innings, and the White Sox used 15 hits to crush the Indians, 11-0.
Santiago (4-1) allowed just one hit and one walk, while Dayan Viciedo highlighted the offense with a grand slam and an RBI single in the victory.
Corey Kluber (2-5) was charged with four runs on five hits and two walks over 5 2/3 innings for the Indians, who had won five of seven coming in.
Getting the call for the White Sox on Tuesday will be righty Jake Peavy, who could be making his final start for Chicago. The former NL Cy Young Award winner has a club option for $22 million which likely won't be picked up, thus making him a free agent.
Peavy, who's 2-0 versus the Indians this season, was an AL All-Star this season, but has gone just 4-7 with a 4.05 ERA since the break. Overall, he is 11-12 with 3.37 ERA.
Cleveland, meanwhile, will counter with righty Justin Masterson, who is 11-15 with a 5.03 ERA. Masterson has lost his last three decisions, but did not get a decision on Wednesday against the White Sox, who reached him for four runs in 4 2/3 innings of a 6-4 win. He's 4-5 lifetime against them with a 2.77 ERA in 18 games, 14 of which have been starts.
Chicago has won 10 of 16 matchups with the Indians this season.