After stranding 13 runners Sunday in a 6-3 loss to the Mariners, the White Sox hope they don't get the same empty feeling this week when they play the Los Angeles Angels.
The lack of clutch hitting after the first inning and a subpar outing by Gavin Floyd stunted some of the momentum heading into the Angels series.
"We had a lot of shots but couldn't get it done," manager Ozzie Guillen said.
Monday night will mark the Sox's first game against Gold Glove center fielder Torii Hunter, who turned down their lucrative offer in favor of the Angels' sudden five-year, $90 million contract. Although feeling jolted initially, the Sox's veterans believe they're more versatile.
Missing out on Hunter actually enabled the Sox to acquire reliever Octavio Dotel and younger outfielder Nick Swisher after they tried to entice Hunter with the acquisition of shortstop Orlando Cabrera and reliever Scott Linebrink.
"We like the guys we got," Jim Thome said. "Torii Hunter is a great player. Part of free agency is going after guys you like. We like our guys and like our chemistry."
That was evident Sunday, as Swisher led some of his teammates in spraying parts of their facial hair pink to honor Mother's Day and raise awareness of breast cancer. But not even Swisher's humor or another stellar outing could have prevented Floyd from getting knocked out in the fourth.
"I came in feeling pretty good but just wasn't able to do it," said Floyd, who gave up five runs on nine hits with two walks and no strikeouts in 32/3 innings.
The Sox hold no bitterness toward Hunter.
"He couldn't turn down that deal," Paul Konerko said. "That was a great deal with a great team. It made sense. He's had some big games already. He fits in well. But he looks good in whatever uniform he's wearing, especially when he's in center field."
Cabrera's four-hit game Sunday illustrated the Sox's efforts to address other areas.
"Any team with Torii Hunter is going to be a great team because he's a great player," Konerko said. "But I think for what our team already has, we needed more of a top-of-the-lineup, younger [player]. It doesn't hurt to get younger. We've got some older guys. You look at a guy like Swisher. Not only is he good now, but he's going to be good for a while.
"We have three or four guys who are kind of middle-of-the-order guys. Torii is an exciting player, and he brings fans to the game, but I don't think it was exactly what our team needed.
"It hasn't played out the way as good as it's going to play out at the end of the year."
Said A.J. Pierzynski, who doubled and drove in a run:
"Obviously, I love Torii. He's an ex-teammate whom I grew up in the game with [in Minnesota]. He found a better place for himself and his family with the money. And things worked out here as well. Nick's doing a great job. [ Brian Anderson] has been doing a great job. Even when we've put [ Alexei] Ramirez in ... it's been a combination of guys, but guys have been doing the job. And that's what you need — a total team effort."
Some Sox players called Hunter before he made his decision.
"I would never call a guy and say 'come here' or 'go there,' " Pierzynski said. "It's their decision, just like [Aaron] Rowand. They're good guys and good people, but at the same time ... they have to make a decision on what they feel is right for them and their family."Copyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun