Public service announcement before we get into the actual game. The nets are up in Guaranteed Rate Field, foul pole-to-foul pole.
The new netting at Guaranteed Rate down the line pic.twitter.com/Hy9iRbeMDb— Scott Merkin (@scottmerkin) July 22, 2019
The White Sox are back home from an overall abysmal road trip out of the All-Star break. They were swept twice, three games at the Oakland Athletics and four at the Kansas City Royals. At least the White Sox were able to salvage something over the weekend with a series win over the Tampa Bay Rays. Now they still are playing a team from Florida, but this time on their own turf, as the Miami Marlins travel to Chicago for game one of three tonight.
Ivan Nova will be on the bump for the Sox, and he has not done well out of the break. In two starts, Nova has an 8.44 ERA in 10 2⁄3 innings, while also allowing three home runs. He averaged a 32 game score over those two starts; however, Nova has been historically good against Marlins hitters. They are slashing .191/.255/.213 against Nova, with only one extra-base hit. Look, the Marlins are real bad, and so is Nova, but at least there might be some cause to expect a win.
Trevor Richards is the starter for the Marlins, and he has been one of their better ones. He has a 4.24 ERA, but the peripherals do not indicate that he deserves that 4.24 ERA. He has a 5.39 xFIP and allows 1.21 HR/9, which really is not good at all. Richards has only faced one White Sox hitter in his short career, Jon Jay. The Chief Justice has gone 0-for-3 against Richards in his career. If there is one thing about this game that seems like a certainty is that with Richards and Nova on to start the game, there will be quite a few home runs allowed on each side.
Meanwhile, let’s check up on some Sox stats. Currently, Yoan Moncada has the eighth-best fWAR in the American League among hitters, at 3.6. That also makes him the fourth-most valuable third baseman in the AL, behind Alex Bregman, Matt Chapman, and Rafael Devers. On the pitching side, Dylan Cease, now with three starts under his belt, has received a vote of confidence in his stuff from Baseball Savant. He is in the 90th percentile for fastball velocity (averaging 96 mph). The fastball spin rate is at the 76th percentile, however, and as James Fegan has reported, that is not necessarily on purpose. Finally, the spin rate on the curve is in the red with at 2,644 rpm, good for the 72nd percentile.
Don’t look now, but Adam Engel is slashing .545/.583/.727 since returning from Charlotte. That is good for a 254 wRC+ — a mark that is totally sustainable given his career 56 wRC+ before last weekend.
Marlins lineup feat. A DESIGNATED HITTER— Fish Stripes (@fishstripes) July 22, 2019
1. LF Granderson
2. 1B Cooper
3. 3B Anderson
4. DH Walker
5. 2B Castro
6. C Alfaro
7. RF Ramírez
8. CF Puello
9. SS Rivera
P Trevor Richards
Game’s at 7:10 p.m. broadcast on NBCSCH and WGN-AM.