I spent at least five minutes trying to rack my brain to remember who the White Sox starting pitcher is for tonight’s game. I typically don’t have to look these things up since I know everyone on the roster and every game feels like a recent event in my life that I paid more attention to than certain dinners with my family or conversations with friends. Usually I can just hash it out in my head.
Hmm…Chris Sale Day isn’t till the end of the series, Danks might be the Friday night game you’re going to but it’s currently listed as Santiago, Jake Peavy just pitched this weekend, Dylan Axelrod was last night. Who is it? Isn’t there some other guy? I’m seeing a generic white face…
Oh no, it’s Jose Quintana. With that my heart sank. I cannot recall the last outing where I thought something other than “Jose did alright, considering all the crazy crap that happened.”
The man has only had three quality starts in eight times out, and while I use ‘quality starts’ way too much for such a flawed stat, the point here is that forces have been conspiring to run up Jose’s pitch count before he can get through even six innings.
But really, we’ve gotten everything we could ask for from Quintana this year. His ERA (3.76, 114 ERA+ in 2012) has risen with the run environment (3.97, 112 ERA+ this season) and it has a more stable base going forward than his fluky rookie success offered. His strikeout rate has bloomed, increasing 3.5% without any damage done to his pristine control, as he continues to more consistent results from his slider and curve.
It’s a good thing he’s not mired in this debate of who’s going to lose their spot to a post-op John Danks. It would be unjust.
White Sox lineup
1. Alejandro De Aza – CF
2. Alexei Ramirez – SS
3. Alex Rios – RF
4. Paul Konerko– 1B
5. Adam Dunn – DH
6. Dayan Viciedo – LF
7. Jeff Keppinger – 3B
8. Tyler Flowers – C
9. Tyler Greene – 2B
Jose Quintana, SP
Whoooa, why can’t Boston starter Felix Doubront throw strikes anymore?!? He’s walked 22 batters in 37.1 innings, has lost two miles on his fastball from last season and is pitching for his life in the Boston starting rotation. His peripherals suggest the Red Sox should some some patience for him and his 6.01 ERA, since that .400 BABIP probably won’t hold. The White Sox will need to be patient and reel Doubront in and oh no oh no oh no oh no….
The Sox have actually gotten a lot better at taking walks (14th in AL, 27th in MLB. The Cubs and their sanctimonious, newly-devoted to sabermetric fanbase are dead last) but this is still pretty far from a strength. It’s weakness. This is a weakness. They are not good at this.
Boston Red Sox lineup
1. Jacoby Ellsbury – CF
2. Jonny Gomes – LF
3. Dustin Pedroia – 2B
4. David Ortiz – DH
5. Mike Napoli – 1B
6. Daniel Nava – RF
7. Will Middlebrooks – 3B
8. Stephen Drew – SS
9. Jarrod Saltalamacchia – C
Felix Doubront, SP
Jonny Gomes would have worked his way into a lineup against a left-hander without help, but Shane Victorino’s hamstring being injured opened up a slot at the top of the order for him. That is the absolute only change in these lineups for either team from last night. Goodness, spice things up, guys. Put David Ortiz in left field or just wear Red Sox and no pants or something kooky.
Where to Watch: WCIU. Haha, jokes on all of us, right guys? Hey, here’s a still shot of a dog, and lemme tell you, this dog loves this mediocre sitcom that’s in syndication on our crappy network and surely the recommendation of a dog is enough to convince you to watch a television show, right guys?
Follow James Fegan on Twitter @JRFegan