Happy Wednesday, Sox fans! That sounds a little different doesn’t it? I couldn’t be happier to be back doing my beloved gamethreads, just on a different day of the week this year. Today, the Chicago White Sox (5-1) will take on the Texas Rangers (2-1) at Surprise Stadium in … Surprise, Ariz. (very original name).
The Rangers weren’t a team the South Siders saw a whole lot of last season, but when they did, Chicago took five of six games. They aren’t the same team as last year’s Rangers though, as they have a completely new and improved middle infield. Before the lockout, they signed second basemen Marcus Semien and shortstop Corey Seager to massive contracts, to go along with talented players already in the fold, like Adolis García. They also acquired catcher Mitch Garver in a trade post-lockout. Let’s not forget the star Vanderbilt pitcher the Rangers drafted last year with the second overall pick, Jack Leiter, although he probably won’t see MLB time for a while.
To spice it up in spring training, the White Sox today will start Lance Lynn against his former team for his first appearance this year. Since being signed and extended by the team, Lynn has made massive contributions as a trusted starter in the rotation. He posted a 2.69 ERA last season, with a 1.07 WHIP and 176 strikeouts. Also we can’t forget his batting average, at .209. Looks like we won’t be seeing him rake anymore due to the universal DH rule, but it was nice while it lasted.
Even though it’s just spring training, make sure to have the mute button ready for the TV if you’re watching with any kids. I’m assuming we might get some strong choice of words from Lynn out on the mound.
Glenn Otto will get the start for the Rangers. The Texas native and Rice college graduate was drafted in 2017 by the New York Yankees, and eventually made his way into the Rangers organization as part of the Joey Gallo trade last season — talk about full circle. Unfortunately, Otto didn’t have his best stuff last season, as he pitched in just six games with a 0-3 record, 9.26 ERA, and 32 hits allowed. Fans have had high hopes for the Rangers 25th-ranked prospect, so hopefully he can redeem himself this spring and fight for a spot int the rotation or bullpen. After all, spring training is a clean slate with new opportunities for players like him.
Here are the starting lineups for today.
Leury García will lead it off today with Tim Anderson getting a break, followed by Luis Robert and José Abreu. Eloy Jiménez will play in the DH spot with Yasmani Grandal out on the field as catcher. Andrew Vaughn will see some time in right field, as Romy González takes over third base. Yoelqui Céspedes will get more time on the field, followed by José Rodríguez in the 9-spot at second base.
The Rangers have chosen not to send out their lineup today, so pick a name out a hat.
Unfortunately, there will be no broadcast on TV from Jason and Steve, or any radio coverage. The good news is the Rangers will have a webcast with their broadcast crew that you can tune into on their website to listen to the game, so at least it’s something. Game time is at 3:05 p.m. CT.