For those who felt splitting the series with the Astros would be a perfectly fine result (author meekly raises hand), today’s game could be pure gravy. The salsa on the nachos. The cherry on the sundae. The hot sauce on the dirty rice. The icing on the cake. The parmesan on the pasta. The clotted cream on the scone. The celery salt on the Chicago dog. The cheese on the burger. The croutons on the Caesar. The the a la mode on the a la mode ...
Oops. Sorry. Got off-track there. It’s always dangerous to do a gamethread at lunch time.
Whatever the dish, the chef today is Lucas Giolito. Giolito’s ERA is still a hefty 4.92, but August has been a better month for him, and last game out he even was efficient enough to last seven innings instead of the usual five innings of 100 pitches or so. Granted, that was against the Tigers, but still.
White Sox pitchers have held the the theoretically tough Houston offense to eight runs in the first three games of the series, so Gio will be trying to continue the trend. Of course, the theoretically tough Sox offense has only scored nine themselves, almost all of those late. And both teams depended on lousy defense by the other for some of the runs.
Because Houston has gone to a six-man rotation for now, the White Sox avoid facing Lance McCullers Jr., who came off of a year-long IL stint last week with six innings of two-hit, no-run ball. Instead the Astros will feature righthander Luis García, who has a journeyman 4.03 ERA and has had a lousy August, giving up 11 runs in 19 innings.
(Statistical anomaly: García’s ERA has been going up every game in August, but his FIP has been going down every game. Bad luck? Bad D? Algorithmic oddity? Go figure.)
García will be facing a White Sox lineup that has Romy González at short for the second day in a row.
That Eloy/Pollock/Sheets outfield should have all Sox fans hoping every fly ball is routine.
Giolito will be taking on an Astros lineup that has the better-hitting Christian Vazquez behind the plate.
Gametime is 1:10 p.m. Central on a beautiful day for baseball: 80 degrees with very light winds in from right center. Usual broadcast suspects.
The Blue Angels have arrived in town to practice for the Air and Water Show, and, while Bridgeport isn’t in their usual path, they’ve been known to adjust to show off for a crowd, so keeping an eye and ear to the sky wouldn’t be remiss.