It’s been an inconsistent spring thus far for the White Sox (8-7), which makes excellent fodder for those who insist on the meaninglessness of spring training, especially one as abbreviated as this. Yesterday was one of the valleys, as the A-squad endured a dismal 11-2 drubbing at the hands of the Athletics. The 11 hits, seven earned runs, and 400-foot blast to Sheldon Neuse surrendered by presumptive No. 4 starter Dallas Keuchel are alarming, spring training or not.
Sheldon Neuse - Oakland Athletics (3)* pic.twitter.com/O1dFwyKB9Z— MLB HR Videos (@MLBHRVideos) April 1, 2022
Now, with Opening Day just a rotation’s turn away, the players still in camp will look to begin the preseason’s conclusion on a positive note with tonight’s tilt against the Arizona Diamondbacks (8-8).
On the bright side, look who’s here!
AJ Pollock is in the building. pic.twitter.com/b0d7BHRLTf— Chicago White Sox (@whitesox) April 2, 2022
While one headliner outfielder arrived, the team also announced amid yesterday’s chaotic flurry that unsurprisingly, Blake Rutherford had cleared waivers and would remain in the organization at Triple-A Charlotte.
OF Blake Rutherford cleared waivers and was outrighted to Class AAA Charlotte.— Chicago White Sox (@whitesox) April 1, 2022
The Frazier-Robertson-Kahnle trade still lives!
Newly-announced, season-opener starter Lance Lynn will take the ball for just his second outing against live competition, following a 2 2⁄3 -inning outing on March 23 that saw him allow three solo home runs to his former club.
Other than the starting battery, Pollock, and presumed Opening Day shortstop Leury García, the rest of the lineup is populated by platooners — another strong week from Gavin Sheets will all but guarantee his occupancy of the DH role against righthanders — and the dynamic spring duo of Yoelqui Céspedes and Micker Adolfo. Céspedes has already been sent to minor league camp and will start the year with Charlotte or Birmingham, but the out-of-options Adolfo is still one of the few players in genuine roster limbo. His hot spring has all but guaranteed that he won’t clear waivers, so this final handful of spring games (and perhaps the first few of the expanded-roster regular season) are functioning as an open audition for a likely trade in the coming days.
Arizona will counter with veteran rotation backbencher Merrill Kelly, now entering his fourth season in the big leagues after a four-year stint in Korea. Much of Arizona’s lineup is about what you’d expect from a third-division NL West club — all due respect recently-extended star Ketel Marte — but there are some names to watch: Catcher and leadoff hitter Daulton Varsho is a breakout candidate after a scorching-hot second half of 2021, and recent high school draft picks Corbin Carroll and Jordan Lawlar are two of the highest-regarded young players in the organization.
First pitch is at 8:05 p.m. CT. The game will be viewable on MLB.TV.