There’s nothing more exciting for a rebuilding team than seeing their young talent break through with a dominant performance. Thursday night, the White Sox watched Yoan Moncada do exactly that.
Moncada’s heroics started with a tying solo home run against Astros closer Ken Giles in the ninth inning He caught up to a 99 mph fastball and hit it out to the opposite field like it was nothing. Look at this:
There are not many players in baseball strong enough to drive that pitch — that’s 99 mph on the outside corner, pretty excellent pitch — the other way with authority. There certainly aren’t many 22-year-olds strong enough to do it. That’s why Moncada was considered the best prospect in baseball coming into the season.
But wait, Moncada didn’t stop there. In the 11th inning Moncada ended the game with a walk-off single to right field against hard-throwing Francis Martes. Here’s the winning hit (CWS 3, HOU 2):
Homer to tie it in the ninth and a walk-off single in the 11th? That is definitely much cooler than whatever I was doing when I was 22. Moncada is a special, special talent, and he showed why Thursday night.
The Astros, by the way, were swept in the three-game series by the lowly White Sox. Houston is now 11-14 since the All-Star break. Fortunately they still have a 12 1/2 game lead in the AL West, so they have plenty of time to figure this out.