In the seventh inning Tuesday night against the San Francisco Giants, Abreu struck out swinging with the ball rolling to the backstop. Instead of trying to advance to first base on a third strike that wasn’t caught, Abreu put his head down and walked back to the White Sox’s dugout.
The Giants did not have to make the play at first base once Abreu gave himself up on the play by walking away.
“Obviously I made a mistake,” Abreu said through an interpreter Wednesday morning. “The manager and the team have talked to me about it and I understand. I made a mistake and that’s something I’m going to fix.”
Not only did manager Robin Ventura talk to Abreu about it following Tuesday’s game, bench coach Mark Parent could be seen talking to Abreu on the bench shortly after the incident happened.
“(Frustration) is part of it, but he understands,” Ventura said. “The position that he’s in, he’s more of a leader on the team, so he needs to be able to (play the right way). If he doesn’t do it, nobody else is going to do it. He understands that.
“He still has emotions and gets frustrated just like everybody else. That’s part of playing the game. That’s the part where the season is so long, that that stuff eventually, everybody goes through it. He understands it.”
Abreu was in the lineup Wednesday batting in the cleanup spot against Giants starter Tim Hudson. It is not known if Abreu received a fine.
During Sunday’s game he also failed to run out a popup that started in foul territory and ended up near the first-base line after it was blown by high winds. Parent appeared to talk to Abreu in the dugout after that incident as well.
“I don’t really consider myself a leader right now of the team, but I have the last couple of times I made a couple of mistakes which is normal,” Abreu said. “I will make sure that it gets fixed.”
While he has been impressive during his rookie season, Abreu has been prone to awkward stretches of at-bats where he can be neutralized. He went hitless in 25 at-bats early in the season and most recently he was controlled by the Los Angeles Angels' pitching staff during the last road trip.
He is 4-for-19 with five strikeouts since Thursday, and while it certainly could be worse, the recent run of games has not set well with Abreu.
“Actually, it doesn’t create any more expectations for me,” Abreu said when told that Ventura considers him a leader. “The player and person that I am, is the player and person that I should be and will be. So, it really doesn’t put any kind of added expectations on me.”