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Gamethread: White Sox at Orioles

The South Siders look to get back on track, as Manny Bañuelos gets his first start in four years

Seattle Mariners v Chicago White Sox
Time is right: Bañuelos gets his first start with the White Sox, as Giolito mends on the IL.
Photo by Nuccio DiNuzzo/Getty Images

Tonight, Manny Bañuelos will get his first start for the White Sox this season — and his first start in the majors since Sept. 6, 2015.

So far this season for Bañuelos, he has had good success in terms of ERA, but his lack of command is concerning. He only has a K/BB% at 4.9%, which is truly bad. However, what has bailed Bañuelos out this season is weak contact and a 48% ground ball rate. His xWOBACON is .319, which is far below the MLB average of .370, and that is what should help him in today’s start in case his control continues to fail him. (For what it is worth, when Bañuelos was a starter in Triple-A last season, Bañuelos had a 3.82 FIP, with a much better K/BB% at 19.5%.)

David Hess is on the mound for Baltimore, and he has never been good in the majors. He has a career 5.96 FIP, and has actually been worse in 2019 with a 6.71 FIP (fourth-worst in baseball, min. 20 innings pitched — Reynaldo Lopez is fifth-worst). Hess pitches a lot to contact and does not walk hitters often, with a 2.14 BB/9. What he does do is allow a good amount of hard contact, and a very high amount of fly balls (58.5%). With baseballs flying out of the park at a new MLB-high rate, being a fly ball pitcher, like Hess, spells disaster. In Hess’s lone start against the White Sox (in 2018) he left with a 29 game score — fortunately, Daniel Palka homered against him twice, but it stuck in Charlotte right now.

Here is a little update on Tim Anderson’s wheels:

Meanwhile, an update: Eloy Jimenez is going on the bereavement list, and Nicky Delmonico is back:

Delmonico, fresh off a two-homer game in Charlotte on Sunday, will be batting sixth tonight:

and here are the Orioles with a supposed MLB lineup: