Happy Sunday! It’s another beautiful day for baseball, and to see two of the best teams in the American League go head-to-head. The Chicago White Sox (72-52) will play against the Tampa Bay Rays (76-48) as they look to take the series with a win today. We’ve seen both teams put on a great display so far in what could be a playoff preview, and today will be an important game as the South Siders continue to fight for home-field advantage for the playoffs.
Let’s take a look at our starting pitchers for today.
Reynaldo López will be on the mound yet again, and has been lights-out as of recently. He will be pitching in his 12th game of the season, and he has a 2-0 record, 1.08 ERA, and a 0.72 WHIP. Not many people were expecting this out of him so quickly, but López has done his job and filled the role he needed to. Hopefully he can continue to cruise along this afternoon. In López’s last outing against the Oakland Athletics he pitched a great game, going five innings with just one hit, two walks, and four strikeouts. His 4-seam fastball is thrown more than half the time at 57.4%, followed by his slider at 35.3%. He also has a curveball and a changeup, but those aren’t thrown nearly as much as his fastball and slider.
Chris Archer is back for the Rays, after being activated from the 60-day IL prior to today's game. He has been sitting out since April with forearm tightness, and is finally back for a team that needs as much starting pitching as it can get right now. Archer has only pitched in two games this year, and he has racked up a 6.23 ERA and 1.85 WHIP in just 4 1⁄3 innings total. His last game was April 10 against the New York Yankees, where he went just 2 1⁄3 innings, with three hits and four strikeouts. In this small sample size, Archer has thrown his slider more than any other pitch at 46.8% of the time this year, followed by his 4-seam fastball (40%) and his changeup (12.8%). It will be interesting to see how he performs against such an explosive offense, and this outing could determine where Tampa sees him going forward and what role he will play.
Luis Robert is hitting .444/.464/.704 (12-27) with two home runs, six RBI and six runs scored over his last six games.— Chicago White Sox (@whitesox) August 22, 2021
⏰: 12:10 p.m. CT
: @ESPN1000 pic.twitter.com/04Litg1WC2
Cesar Hernández will lead it off, as Tim Anderson gets yet another day off. It doesn’t look to be anything serious, but Anderson seems to be dealing with leg soreness and Tony La Russa just wants to be cautious. Luis Robert is back and ready to rake, while José Abreu and Eloy Jiménez follow. Yoán Moncada will start at third while Andrew Vaughn has a day as the DH. Brian Goodwin, Danny Mendick, and Zack Collins will close out the order.
Here’s how the Rays will look:
Series up for grabs pic.twitter.com/HSC7mLMJFp— Tampa Bay Rays (@RaysBaseball) August 22, 2021
Game time is at 12:10 p.m. CT on NBCSCHI. Listen in to the action at ESPN 1000. Let’s go make a statement and win a series!