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White Sox’ Tim Anderson rose to playoff occasion in losing cause

“It’s all about those moments, and you never want to turn away from those moments,” Anderson said.

Tim Anderson singles against the Oakland Athletics during the first inning of Game 3.
Tim Anderson singles against the Oakland Athletics during the first inning of Game 3.
Eric Risberg/AP

Shortstop and leadoff man Tim Anderson had three hits in all three games of the wild-card series and finished 9-for-14 in the White Sox’ losing effort, becoming the first player to get nine hits in his first three playoff games, according to Elias.

Four other players had eight: Mark Grace in 1989, Dante Bichette in 1995, Jim Edmonds in 2000 and Carlos Gonzalez in 2009.

“These are the moments you want to be in,” Anderson said. “Who’s going to come up big? Who’s going to get that big hit? It’s all about those moments, and you never want to turn away from those moments.”

Anderson, who won the American League batting title in 2019, put himself in the AL MVP conversation this season, and after cooling off down the stretch, turned it around in the postseason.

“That’s how you stamp your name; that’s how you carry your team, as well,” Anderson said. “Just got to keep going, continue to be a great teammate, continue to lead and try to guide these guys in the right direction.

‘‘Hopefully, we’ll be having this same conversation next year, but on the [winning] end.”

Crochet’s injury

Left-hander Garrett Crochet was just one of many things about the Sox’ future that glowed this season — he flashed 100-101 mph velocity over five near unhittable late-season scoreless appearances only three months after getting drafted.

His leaving the Sox’ 6-4 loss in Game 3 with forearm tightness was about as deflating a development imaginable, right after he had struck out both batters he faced with “only” 97-99 mph heat in the first and second innings Thursday.

Manager Rick Renteria had planned to use Crochet for two innings-plus, and with Aaron Bummer summoned sooner than expected to take over in the second inning, the Sox were upstreaming the rest of the way on a day they used nine pitchers in a loss that ended their season.

“The velocity showed something, so we went out and talked to him,” Renteria said.

“We asked him how he was doing, and he said he was fine. Obviously, he had some tightness in that forearm. It wasn’t even a thought to leave him there.”

Forearm soreness is often a precursor to a more serious elbow injury, so Crochet’s health will be something to watch in the offseason. Crochet was drafted 11th overall in June and has not pitched in the minor leagues.

Farewell?

Catcher James McCann becomes a free agent and sounded like one who didn’t expect to return to the Sox.

“I look back on my time here very fondly,” McCann said after the game. “This is a time of my life where having newborns, 1-year-olds, and I get to bring them to the city of Chicago. We felt like we were taken in like family.

‘‘I had success here and really came into my own as a player. I’ll always look back fondly on my time here in Chicago regardless of what happens in the future.”

This and that

Game 3 was the Sox franchise’s first win-or-go-home playoff game.

† With his 487-foot home run, 22-year-old Luis Robert was the second-youngest AL player to go deep in a winner-take-all game since Mickey Mantle in Game 7 of the 1952 World Series.