Two of the brighter spots of spring so far see starts today for the Chicago White Sox at Camelback Ranch vs. the Texas Rangers. Tyler Saladino shoves Matt Davidson off of the hot corner for a game, and Luis Basabe slots into left field.
Time: 2:05 p.m. CST
Lucas Giolito takes the mound for his first spring start today. He was the best pitcher on the White Sox after his call-up last August, going 3-3 in seven starts with a 2.38 ERA, 34 strikeouts, 12 walks and 1.5 WAR. His FIP came in at 4.94, but for purposes of optimism and in plugging him for an Opening Day start, let’s overlook that. Frosty has never faced the Rangers.
Adam Engel leads off for the White Sox today. Strange, you say, for a light-hitting youngster to be leading off? Well, last September 8 vs. the Giants, Engel went 2-for-3 off of today’s Texas starter, Matt Moore, torturing him with a triple, a fly out to deep right-center and a bunt single.
Moore pitched for the San Francisco Giants last season and would like to pretend he did not: six wins against a league-leading 15 losses, 5.52 ERA, a league-leading 107 earned runs, 67 walks against 148 strikeouts and a -0.3 WAR.
However, seeing the Sox might put some spring in Matty Moe’s step, as he holds a 5-1 career record against Chicago, with a 1.67 ERA, eight walks against 43 strikeouts and a 10.3 K/9. Even during his abysmal 2017 season, Moore found time to beat the White Sox: last September 8, he led the Giants to a 9-2 win, giving up five hits and punching out four over 6 2⁄3 innings.
The White Sox pitching debuts continue on Thursday and Friday, with Reynaldo Lopez and Miguel Gonzalez taking the pill.