If last night’s 9-0 win against the Cincinnati Reds is any indication of how the White Sox will play after Luis Robert’s injury, then this team will be just fine.
Dylan “Dealin” Cease pitched a gem last night in the birthplace of baseball. He threw six innings, gave up one hit, and struck out 11 to earn his second win of the year and lower his ERA to a cool 2.37 in 30 1/3 innings pitched. As Southsidesox.com contributor, Tommy Barbee, put it last night, “It was certainly a charmed night for Cease.” A charmed night indeed, Tommy. A charmed indeed.
The loss of Robert, on top of the loss of Eloy Jimenez, certainly affects the team in so many different ways, but the players know they have to step up while Rick Hahn searches for a solution. Even without the two young slugging outfielders, the team was able to pounce all over the Reds. Anyone watching the game last night could see the energy (in the form of high fives) when a player crossed home plate and entered the dugout.
The Sox wish to continue that success in Cincinnati this morning.
Dallas Keuchel will take the mound for Chicago. He was moved up to today’s start to stay on a regular rest schedule and give Carlos Rodon an extra few days — who will get the start on Friday. Keuchel hasn’t had the start he hoped for this season, posting a 1-1 record, a 4.65 ERA, and 16 strikeouts. In his first loss of the season last week against Cleveland, the southpaw threw five beautiful shutout innings, with a hideous third inning caught in the middle — giving up four runs and ultimately leading to the team’s defeat. Keuchel has shown glimpses of his glorious past this season and there is little doubt amongst management and fans that his ERA will remain as high as it is now. Let’s hope he drops it a significant amount in today’s matchup.
Chicago’s lineup isn’t that much of a surprise. Billy Hamilton will start in centerfield. (It was very cool to see him get applause from the crowd he played in front of for 6 years.) Nick Madrigal is in the two-hole again. Jose Abreu will bat cleanup, followed by Andrew Vaughn. Yermín Mercedes sits again — Not sure if he got caught in Cincinnati traffic or La Russa’s saving his bat for the series against the division rival, Kansas City Royals?
Here’s the lineup:
Today's #WhiteSox starters in Cincinnati!— Chicago White Sox (@whitesox) May 5, 2021
⏰: 11:35 a.m.
: @ESPN1000 pic.twitter.com/SQ2u76DyaR
Sonny Gray starts for the Reds. He’s had a bumpy start this year after returning from a back injury. He has a 0-2 record, 5.93 ERA, and 23 stikeouts. He seemed to find the old Sonny in his last start against the Dodgers, striking out 11 over 5 2/3 innings despite taking the loss. Hopefully, the Sox can make it rain on Sonny today — a little play on words.
Nick Castellanos was scratched with back tightness for the Reds.
New Reds lineup— Charlie Goldsmith (@CharlieG__) May 5, 2021
Nick Senzel (CF)
Jesse Winker (LF)
Joey Votto (1B)
Mike Moustakas (3B)
Tyler Stephenson (C)
Tyler Naquin (RF)
Jonathan India (2B)
Sonny Gray (P) https://t.co/NpjJkuhYYg
The game starts at 11:35 am CT. Jason Benetti and Len Kasper call the game for NBCSChicago. Steve Stone has some time off to “attend to his dogs.” ESPN1000 will also have coverage. Sit back, relax, and enjoy some morning ball!