The second game of Chicago’s (28-35) hazy doubleheader (stay safe, East Coast readers!) against the Yankees (36-27) in the Bronx is set to kick off in just 20 minutes, following a back-and-forth afternoon edition that was equal parts thrilling, frustrating, joyous, and anxiety inducing, culminating in a questionable double play call that ended the game with a 6-5 Sox victory. Luis Robert Jr., Yoán Moncada, and Eloy Jiménez all homered in the same game for the first time in their careers, and now, the Sox will look to complete their first sweep of the Yankees in New York since June 15-18, 2000. The winning pitchers then? Mike Sirotka, James Baldwin, Cal Eldred, and Jim Parque.
Standing in their way, the Sox will be first-hand witnesses to prospect Randy Vásquez’s second big league start, following a debut in which he struck out six Padres over 4 2⁄3 innings on May 26. Vásquez, who has a 5.13 ERA in 10 starts for Triple-A Scranton-Wilkes Barre, was ranked as the team’s 11th-best prospect by FanGraphs entering the season, and appeared on Baseball Prospectus’s 2022 top prospect list at 90 out of 100. Vásquez supplements a cutter-sinker combination with a nice, sweeping breaking ball, but was plagued by 26 walks in 47 1⁄3 Triple-A innings, a rate of 4.9 per nine. If Sox hitters can work counts and rack up pitches, they ought to be able to get to a Yankees bullpen early on that’s already thrown three of their best relievers in Wandy Peralta, Jimmy Cordero, and Michael King.
The lineup the Sox are putting out against Vásquez features a few notable subs. As one would expect, Yasmani Grandal will take Seby Zavala’s place behind the plate, but the 1-2 punch of (former up-and-coming Yankee) Clint Frazier and Gavin Sheets at the top of the lineup is something we haven’t seen before. Grabbing some bench at their expense are Andrew Benintendi and Andrew Vaughn, whose usual post at first base will be occupied Jake Burger while Eloy Jiménez moves to DH. Finally, Tim Anderson receives a rare game off, with Romy González starting at second for the second time today and Elvis Andrus slotting in at shortstop.
First pitch is at 6:35 p.m. CT, once again broadcast on NBC Sports Chicago and ESPN AM 1000. See you in the comments!