So far, since his return from being sidelined for over one year, we'd seen a good John Danks and a bad John Danks. With many questions lingering over what we'll continue to get from the $56 million man, the Texas-native followed up his poor start last week at Wrigley Field with more of the same in Seattle.
The game actually got off to a much better start than we'd seen in a while, with the White Sox jumping out to a 1-0 lead in the top of the second inning thanks to a Dayan Viciedo double and a two-out, RBI single from Jeff Keppinger. But once given the first lead any Sox pitcher has been handed in eight days, Danks quickly fell apart.
In that second inning, Nick Franklin, who had singled, advanced to second base on a ball that got by catcher Tyler Flowers. But at this point, I expect to see that happen one time per ball game.
Jesus Sucre singled to bring him in, so it was hard to be upset with Danks for giving up the lead so quickly. You really had to charge that run to Tyler. But 'Danksy' took the pressure off of his dear battery mate by beginning to elevate the changeup in the third inning.
A Kyle Seager bunt single got things started off for the M's that inning (why not), but after a Kendrys Morales double off the center field wall (that Alejandro De Aza misplayed, for good measure), Raul Ibanez homered to make it a 4-1 contest.
And cue the circus music once again!
On a positive note, Danks was just a couple of bad pitches away from having a quality start. But at the same time, there were several other fly-outs that appeared to be 'just missed.'
He needs to get his control better, and he needs to do it now. Whether it's to help a White Sox team climb back to .500 and beyond or to be halfway decent trade bait, he needs to figure it out.
He finished after tossing six full innings, letting up those four runs (only three earned) on seven hits, one walk, and five strike outs. His ERA lowered to 5.06 after the performance.
There's really not much to discuss about the offense. In addition to Tank, Alex Rios and Paul Konerko also hit doubles off of starter Joe Saunders, who had a pretty easy night facing the White Sox. Gordon Beckham looked decent in his return, hitting the ball hard in two of his three at bats but walking away 0-for-3.
The Sox picked up their final run of the night with two outs in the ninth inning on an Adam Dunn RBI single, but then Jeff Keppinger flew out to extend the team's losing streak to seven games.
Of Note ...
Matt Thornton worked 1.1 innings, lowering his ERA to 3.63
Mark Parent was ejected for arguing the strike zone
Box Score - Play-by-Play - Photos - Video
Things most certainly do not get easier going forward for the White Sox, as they face Felix Hernandez and Hisashi Iwakuma in the final two games of the series. Hopefully we can beat King Felix like we did in the second series of the season and give ourselves a chance to win a rubber match on Wednesday.