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Gamethread: White Sox at Royals

The South Siders look to their ace for a win in the opener against Kansas City

Is there any magic left in the mustache?
| Quinn Harris/Getty Images

May has seen some significantly improved baseball for the Good Guys, winning 4-of-6 so far this month. They look to keep the momentum moving forward during this seven-game stretch against the Kansas City Royals and Houston Astros. Chicago currently sits seven games back of first and 11 games below .500. There’s still a lot of work to do to get this team back on track, and a win tonight would be a welcome start to the week.

Tonight at Kauffman Stadium, the Sox will face a Royals team that owns the second-worst record in MLB at 9-26 and sits in the basement of the American League Central. The only team with a worse record is the Oakland A’s. One of the biggest struggles this year for the Crowns has been their record at home, where they are 3-16. Here’s hoping the Pale Hose can exploit the Royals’ poor at-home play.

The South Siders are sending Dylan Cease to the bump for the eighth time this season. It’s been a bit of a rough go in 2023 for the staff ace. There have been flashes of the brilliance we saw in 2022 that made him a Cy Young finalist, but for the most part, control issues have plagued the righthander, as high pitch counts and walks especially remain a problem for Dylan, with a BB/9 of 4.8. The excellent news is Cease matches up well against Kansas City, who only owns a .203 batting average and .322 slugging percentage against him in 274 plate appearances. He also gets a lot of swings-and-misses, with a 38.6% whiff rate. The Royals can expect to see a four-pitch mix from Cease: slider (40.6%), 4-seam fastball (37.9%), curveball (18.2%), and changeup (3.3%).

Baseball Savant

Opposite Cease, the Royals will send veteran Zack Greinke to the mound, who has also had a tough start to 2023. He is entering his 20th major league season and the second year in his second go around with the Royals. Greinke was a workhorse for Kansas City last season, going 4-9 in 26 starts with a 3.68 ERA in 137 innings. The righthander has struggled so far this season, at 1-4 with a 5.25 ERA in 36 innings. The Sox have seen a lot of Greinke throughout his career and have fared decently, winning 10 and losing 10. Additionally, in 766 plate appearances, they’ve slashed .267/.308/.422 with a .730 OPS. Elvis Andrus has performed well against Greinke, with 11 hits, one walk, and a .344 batting average in 36 at-bats. The Sox can plan to see a six-pitch mix: curveball (22.3%), 4-seam fastball (21.6%), slider (15.8%), sinker (14%), changeup (14%), and cutter (12.3%).

Baseball Savant

Here is the starting lineup for the White Sox:

Here is the starting lineup for the Royals:

The game is at 6:40 p.m. CST. Watch on NBCSCHI and listen in at ESPN-AM 1000. I’ll see you postgame with the recap, and joining me will be Kristina Airdo on the Six Pack and Allie Wesel on the Bird App.


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