It surprises no one that the last two nights have resulted in double-digit run outputs for Minnesota. The White Sox are on pace to surpass 100 losses, so losing in embarrassing fashion to the division leader makes sense.
You know what also makes sense? The starter from Tuesday’s nightcap against Kansas City is starting on just three days’ rest after giving up eight runs. Actually, that probably doesn’t make much sense, but when only two-fifths of your starting rotation from Opening Day is still intact, things like this happen.
And so, Touki Toussaint will get the start this evening at 35th & Shields. The righthander began his stint with the White Sox making a case for himself in the starting rotation in 2024. His last seven starts have left something to be desired, and it seems more and more likely he will be seeking new employment on October 2. Over his last seven starts, Toussaint is 2-3 with an 8.01 ERA. He has walked 24 and struck out just 33.
Opposite of him tonight is righthander, Pablo López. His last seven starts have been vastly different to Touki’s. López is 4-1 with a 1.64 ERA, giving up just eight earned runs over 44 innings of work. In that time He has struck out 48 and walked a mere 10 batters. The righty utilizes a mix of five pitches, but mainly has been using a four-seam fastball, changeup, and sweeper this season. The addition of the sweeper in his arsenal plus his fastball velocity increasing by two miles per hour from 2022 has increased his strikeout rate 5%. In 2022, López was striking out batters 23.6% of the time, and now hitters are whiffing at at a rate of 28.9%.
Lucky for López — and, let’s be honest, all pitchers who have faced the White Sox this season have been lucky — Chicago chases pitches at an above-average rate. It is likely Chicago’s lineup collects a number of strikeouts against Minnesota’s arms tonight.
The Twins, on the other hand, will look to give Touki another Kansas City special this evening.
It is halfway to St. Patrick’s Day at the ballpark, and if anything, the stadium will be green with envy. First pitch tonight is at 6:10 p.m. CST. The TV broadcast is on NBCSC and the radio broadcast can be found on ESPN 1000.