Who doesn’t love a good White Sox home opener blowout? The Chicago White Sox did just that against the Kansas City Royals. And who doesn’t love a complete-game shutout, because Lance Lynn did just that for the South Siders! AND who doesn’t love home run baseballs that are up in orbit? Yermín Mercedes helped with that!
For the first time in more than a year, the White Sox played in front of their fans at Guaranteed Rate Field, and they put on a show! With this victory, they improve to .500 with a 4-4 record, and they look to be a game over .500 once Saturday’s game is all said and done.
A major tip of the cap to Lance Lynn, who pitched the first complete game and shutout for the White Sox during the 2021 season! Five of his pitches were hit for base knocks, but Lynn evened out the damage with 11 strikeouts and no walks. It was an all-around fantastic performance for Lynn!
This is how his 111-pitch outing breaks down:
4-seam fastball: 34% | 9 called strikes + 6 whiffs (26%) | 93.4 mpg avg.
Sinker: 31% | 4 called strikes + 5 whiffs (28%) | 91.8 mph avg.
Cutter: 27% | 5 called strikes + 4 whiffs (27%) | 88.2 mph avg.
Curveball: 7% | 1 called strike + 2 whiffs (50%) | 84.6 mph avg.
Changeup: 1% | 0 called strikes + 0 whiifs (0%) | 86.7 mph avg.
Lynn surrendered just six hard-hit balls over nine innings, and an average exit velocity of 89.1 mph.
As for the opposition, Brad Keller had a rather short outing, as he was Bad Keller. In 3 1⁄3 innings, Keller gave up six hits and three walks leading to four runs. He did strike out three, but he gave up two longballs.
Here’s how Keller’s 69-pitch outing took shape:
Sinker: 45% | 8 called strikes + 2 whiffs (18%) | 92.8 mpg avg.
Slider: 28% | 1 called strike + 4 whiffs (40%) | 85.7 mph avg.
4-seam fastball: 22% | 1 called strike + 0 whiffs (0%) | 93.5 mph avg.
Changeup: 6% | 1 called strike + 0 whiffs | 87.8 mph. avg.
Keller gave up five hard-hit balls in 3 1⁄3 innings, and an average max exit velocity of 85.2 mph. Keller’s max exit velocity was 113.3, thanks to this guy:
The man, the myth, the legend.— Chicago White Sox (@whitesox) April 8, 2021
Yermín Mercedes! pic.twitter.com/Vo24IaoOkm
Luis Robert, a six-tool player, went up to bat in the bottom of the second with the bases load. He smoked a baseball to left field, but it resulted as a line out...of the sacrificial variety (1.59 LI). Nick Madrigal tagged and scored from third, which gave the South Siders a 4-0 lead at the time!
To contrary belief, Keller did not cook up the most pressure; instead, rookie Kyle Isbel accumulated a 0.82 pLI. Isbel went 0-for-3 with two strikeouts and left two runners on base.
With the smoothest swing since Ken Griffey Jr., Yoán Moncada’s two-run blast during the bottom of the first inning provided a .173 WPA and was all the Sox needed to win, plus an extra run.
Party at our house. You're all invited! pic.twitter.com/q29AFO83Rq— Chicago White Sox (@whitesox) April 8, 2021
Without any hesitation, Lance Lynn (.252 WPA) was the no-doubt top performer of tonight’s ballgame!
This is the second time in #WhiteSox history a pitcher has had 10+ K in a home opener— Christopher Kamka (@ckamka) April 9, 2021
Edwin Jackson 13 in 2011
Lance Lynn tonight
Yermín Mercedes was nothing short of amazing in his White Sox home opener debut. His 2-for-4 night produced the hardest-hit ball of the evening at 113.3 mph (solo blast) and Moncada secured the second hardest-hit ball at 106.6 mph for his two-run home run. Talk about EZ power!
Luckiest hit: Known for his sneakiness, Salvador Pérez recorded an infield single (72.8 mph), .060 xBA
Toughest out: Adam Eaton (106.5 mph double-play grounder), .850 xBA
Hardest hit: Yermín Mercedes (113.3 mph home run), 1.000 xBA
Weakest contact: Yermín Mercedes’ (for the irony) 68.9 mph fly out, .380 xBA
Longest hit: Yermín Mercedes (485-foot home run), 113.3 mph, 1.000 xBA
LI measures pressure per play
pLI measures total pressure faced in game
Whiff a swing-and-miss
WPA win probability added measures contributions to the win
xBA expected batting average
In an exciting 6-0 shutout victory, which White Sox player deserves tonight’s MVP honors?
This poll is closed
Lance Lynn: 9 IP, 0 R, 5 H, 0 BB, 11 SO
Yermín Mercedes: 2-for-4, 1 HR that has yet to land, 1 RBI
Yoán Moncada: 1-for-4, 1 HR, 2 RBI
Danny Mendick: 3-for-3, 1 BB
Which Cold Cat hopes to contribute more in the next White Sox win?
This poll is closed
Luis Robert: 0-for-3, 1 RBI, 1 BB, 1 SO
Yasmani Grandal: 0-for-2, 1 R, 2 BB, 2 SO
Nick Williams: 0-for-3, 1 SO, 3 LOB
José Abreu: 1-for-4, 5 LOB