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Gamethread: White Sox at Cubs

Michael Kopech is set to make his first career start against the North Siders

Chicago White Sox v Minnesota Twins
Back to business: Michael Kopech will make his first start in a Crosstown Classic game. He enters with a 1.42 ERA.
Photo by Brace Hemmelgarn/Minnesota Twins/Getty Images

It will be a matchup between two 9-13 teams in the first game of this year’s Crosstown Classic. The White Sox and Cubs are both off to slow starts, though the South Siders entered the season with far higher expectations.

Michael Kopech, the starting pitcher for the White Sox, has been one of the bright spots of the South Siders’ season. Kopech enters tonight’s game with a 1.42 ERA, a 2.76 xERA, and a 2.76 FIP in 19 innings. As a result of those excellent numbers, Kopech is already a 0.5-fWAR pitcher. He will look to keep his positive momentum going against the Cubs, who are averaging 4.36 runs per game this season. It is worth noting that the Cubs’ run total is a bit inflated due to their 21-0 win over the lowly Pirates.

Righthander Scott Effross, a 28-year-old out of Indiana University, will start for the Cubs. In 10 innings of work this season, Effross has given the Cubs a solid contribution. In those innings, Effross has a 1.80 ERA, a 1.45 xERA, and a 0.98 FIP, rendering him a 0.3-fWAR pitcher. The White Sox have struggled immensely against right-handed pitchers this season, slashing only .202/.251/.318 against them. The White Sox will need to improve on those numbers significantly in order to make a serious push for a World Series title.

Here are tonight’s starting lineups:

The first pitch is scheduled to take place at 6:40 p.m. Central. As usual, NBC Sports Chicago will televise the game, and WMVP 1000 AM will have the radio coverage. Let’s get a win at Wrigley.