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MLB: Texas Rangers at Chicago White Sox

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Gamethread: Red Sox at White Sox

One Sox will win the series today, but what color will it be? Our frankenthread anticipates the ending

Tanner Banks, looking fly but pitching flies in his last outing against the Texas Rangers.
| Kamil Krzaczynski-USA TODAY Sports

Happy Sunday Sox fans. Today, the Boston Red Sox will play their final game against the Chicago White Sox at Guaranteed Rate Field. It’s been a fairly close series so far, with the Red Sox taking game one and the White Sox taking the sandwich game yesterday on a walk-off hit. The team went from a terrible offensive game to a home run-filled frenzy yesterday afternoon. Which one will we get today? It all depends on how we do against righty Kutter Crawford.

But first, here’s a fun little stat that’s sure to make your morning.

Yesterday’s win against the Red Sox marked the 18th time this season that the White Sox have split the first two games of a series, giving them a chance to clinch a win — or, at worst, a tie — in the third game.

Their record in those Game 3s to this point?


So, Crawford is 2-3 this year with a 3.74 ERA and 1.14 WHIP. He was a late round draft pick for the Red Sox in 2017 and made his debut two seasons ago. He joined the rotation this season, but his outings have been fairly short up until this month. He has been a very well-developed player, and many Boston fans are excited about his potential. In his last outing against the Minnesota Twins, Kutter went five innings with six hits, no runs, no walks, and five strikeouts. He uses a mix of six pitches, with his fastball being used the most at 39.2%. He follows with a cutter (heh, 30.1%), curveball (12.1%), splitter (11%), slider (4.7%), and sweeper (3%).

Tanner Banks will make his second consecutive start for the White Sox in what is looking to be like another bullpen day, with the rotation a pitcher short right now, and seemingly into perpetuity. The goal is to get a good few innings out of Banks. He is 0-2 with a 4.70 ERA and 1.04 WHIP. He has 13 strikeouts in 15 1⁄3 innings. His last outing against the Texas Rangers was not great, as he started and went 3 2⁄3 innings with five hits, three runs, and three strikeouts. It’s looking like the offense is going to have to come alive today, because the bullpen has a lot of ground to cover.

The lineup that the increasingly out-of-his-depth Pedro Grifol is sending out there this afternoon to attempt to push back on the malaise doesn’t inspire confidence, although it’s admittedly much less of an indictment of Grifol than of a roster that was so poorly constructed that it barely took two-and-a-half months before relying on Tanner Banks and Zach Remillard to wins series for them.

Surely, surely there’s no way that calling up José Rodríguez to have him not play baseball for a week-and-a-half could interrupt the badly-needed hot streak he’s been on after a sluggish start to the season, right? It’s hardly worth complaining about anymore, but the fact that Remillard and Elvis Andrus will have taken roughly 25 plate appearances this series that could have gone to Rodríguez or Lenyn Sosa is still infuriating, if only because no matter what the team says, there is not a single other club in the league that handles their prospects like this.

Hey, wait a second, why are Andrus and Remillard in the lineup? That would be because Tim Anderson, who is clearly injured severely enough to warrant an IL stint, is once again not in the lineup, presumably not available to play, and not on the IL. Again: There is not a single team in the league that plays a full third of their games with a reduced roster simply because they do not put players on the IL when they are injured. And Pedro added today that after his brief second base experiment, when TA comes back it will be as SS, so he will play second nevermore.

It’s not super clear how good of a manager Álex Cora would be considered had he not been blatantly cheating for pretty much all of his most successful seasons as a coach. But he’s proven himself to be, at the very least, competent, and I cannot stop being assaulted by the irony that Ricky Renteria is probably the only manager the Sox have had in the last decade-plus to whom that label applies. Here’s the lineup Cora is running out today in his attempt to take the series.

First pitch is at 1:10 PM CT, and as per usual, the game is being broadcast on NBC Sports Chicago and ESPN 1000 AM. See you in the comments!

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