Yesterday’s loss may have kept interim manager Miguel Cairo from keeping his undefeated record (we don’t charge him with Tuesday’s loss in a game where the lineup and prep was done by the HOFBP before heading off on with an alleged medical problem — that’s like a reliever coming in with a 3-0 count on the batter), but the more important game of the day was the one in Cleveland.
- The Guardians lost, so the White Sox didn’t lose any ground
- The game started late for an afternoon contest, then had a 4 1⁄2 - hour rain delay and lasted 11 innings, ending at 11 p.m. Eastern, so the Mariners barely got to the airport before their charter expired and must have sailed into their home port just about in time to head to the locker room
- The delay came in the top of the fourth, so with the extra innings every Mariners reliever made an appearance
All told, if the Mariners play tonight like they fell asleep on the bases or in the field, it will probably be because they really did fall asleep. Either that, or they’ll be so full of Red Bull their whole bodies will be shaking, which is not generally conducive to good baseball. For a team that relies on solid pitching and defense, neither is a good situation.
Taking advantage of the presumably sleepwalking Seattle lineup will be the job of Lance Lynn, who still sports nasty season stats like a 4.70 ERA, but had a solid August, giving up just 10 earned runs in 36 2⁄3 innings.
Another break for the Sox today is facing Marco Gonzalez, probably the weakest of Seattle’s starters, and also a lefty. Gonzalez has a 3.99 ERA but much worse FIP, and whose ERA in August was 5.08. Gonzalez will be throwing a five-pitch repertoire, where the changeup is his favorite, all thrown softly enough to be crafty-leftyish except he’s apparently not all that crafty, to a White Sox lineup that features the return of Luis Robert from an injury and paternity leave hiatus:
Lynn takes on a Mariners lineup that hits for power, with four usual starters with 18 or more long balls. But Seattle’s No. 1 HR and RBI man, Eugenio Suarez, has the day — or at least the start — off in favor of old buddy Jake Lamb. Control will be a key, because the Mariners are only 12th in the league in average, but second in walks.
Dealing with leadoff hitter Julio Rodriguez will be the big challenge, because Rodriguez has both 23 dingers and 24 stolen bases.
In roster news, Aaron Bummer and Yoán Moncada are both back from the IL, with Mark Payton and Adam Haseley sent down to make room. Also, space was made on the 40-man roster with the DFA (and reassignment to Charlotte after going unclaimed) of righty starter Tobias Meyers.
First pitch is scheduled for 5:40 p.m. Central. Idiot box coverage is back at NBC Sports Channel, but who might be in the booth is anybody’s guess. Minnesota was kind enough to lose to the Yankees this afternoon, so there’s ground to be made up on the Twins.