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Gamethread: White Sox at Guardians

South Siders take on their division rivals two weeks away from Opening Day.

MLB: Spring Training-Los Angeles Angels at Chicago White Sox Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

As we are exactly two weeks from Opening Day, the Chicago White Sox will take on their division rivals, the Cleveland Guardians, in today’s Spring Training matchup. Yesterday’s game against the Giants was postponed due to rain, so the South Siders should be well rested to get today’s win.

White Sox hitters could have a tough time with Cleveland Ace, Tristan McKenzie, on the mound, and although Tristan’s last couple starts have been extremely subpar, we know that he still has a lot of talent to strike anyone out on a moment’s notice. In 2022, he had a 2.96 ERA over 191 13 innings, with 190 strikeouts, and only walked 44 ... not bad at all.

Elvis Andrus continues to hold down the leadoff spot while Tim Anderson is away with Team USA at the World Baseball Classic, and just as we saw last year, he’s consistently able to produce and get on base. In his 19 at-bat’s, Elvis is slashing .368/.455/.789, and while it is likely not sustainable, it’s definitely impressive and White Sox fans are likely giddy at the thought of watching an actual second baseman.

Oscar Colás and Andrew Benintendi will follow Andrus, and yet again we find Benintendi in the three-spot. Maybe there is a method to Grifol’s madness here, but I’m not going to worry about that for another two weeks since he’s been doing great so far. Jake Burger will also be getting some reps in at first base today, as Hanser Alberto takes over at third base.

Nick Avila will take the mound for the White Sox today, who has been average at best this Spring Training, although he is coming off a stronger outing where he didn’t give any runs up. In his six innings, he has given up three runs, and six hits, while posting a 4.50 ERA. In the 159 innings he has pitched in the minors, he has a more impressive 3.66 ERA, so it will be interesting to see how he fairs against a strong Cleveland lineup!

Now for the White Sox lineup:

For Cleveland, we have the usual suspects who like to do damage against the White Sox, including Jose Ramirez and Josh Naylor. And lucky for us, they’ve also added slugger Josh Bell in the offseason.

Let’s take a look at their lineup today:

Amid the chaos that is March Madness, the game won’t be televised, but Cleveland will have their radio broadcast available for the 2:05 p.m. CT. Let’s go Sox!