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July 11, 2013; Detroit, MI, USA; Chicago White Sox starting pitcher Chris Sale (49) receives congratulations from teammates after being relieved in the seventh inning against the Detroit Tigers at Comerica Park. Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

A Scherzer - Sale Showdown - Game Preview and Lineups 7/22

Every now and then the pitching matchups align and you get something beautiful to watch. Of course, a hyped duel like tonight’s Max Scherzer vs. Chris Sale turn out to be 10-8 clunkers from time to time, but the odds are you’re in for a night of stellar pitching and muted offense. In a perfect world this would also be a very important game between two teams battling it out for divisional dominance. Instead it’s a bit of the White Sox playing early spoiler and just trying to get wins for wins’ sake.

Max Scherzer, owner of the much ballyhooed-but-who-really-cares 13-1 record carries a decent 3.19 ERA and ridiculous 30.1% strikeout rate which is good for 2nd in the majors behind Yu Darvish. That’s impressive. The White Sox, believe it or not, are not even top 10 in the bigs for striking out, and won’t be as easy a stat pad for Scherzer as one might initially think. There will be K’s though. Oh yes, there will be K’s. The Tigers righty struck out 6 in his last start against the Rangers which matches the low on his season. Regardless of the outing length he has struck out at least 6 batters every single time.

Chris Sale brings a 27.4% K rate which is certainly nothing to sneeze at and has kept his ERA under 3 for most of the season, currently sitting at 2.85. On top of dominant numbers, Sale has been durable, nearly always pitching at least into the 7th and routinely beyond. The two starters register 3(Scherzer) and 4(Sale) in the AL in strikeout to walk ratios and have identical .83 HR/9 marks, good for 12/13 in the top 15 in the league. These are good pitchers. This will be a good game.

Today’s Lineup:

1. De Aza – CF
2. Alexei – SS
3. Rios – RF
4. Dunn – 1B
5. Konerko – DH
6. Keppinger – 2B
7. Gillaspie – 3B
8. Viciedo – LF
9. Phegley – C

Paul Konerko, newly activated after completing his rehab assignment in AA Birmingham is getting some time at DH. Alejandro De Aza is currently riding a 9 game hit streak in which he’s scored 11 runs.

Detroit Tigers Lineup:

1. Austin Jackson – CF
2. Torii Hunter – RF
3. Miguel Cabrera – 3B
4. Prince Fielder – 1B
5. Victor Martinez – DH
6. Jhonny Peralta – SS
7. Matt Tuiasosopo – LF
8. Brayan Pena – C
9. Hernan Perez – 2B

There is a chance that I’ll be able to properly say “Tuiasosopo” by the time this series ends.

Where to Watch
Today’s game will be broadcast on WCIU and Fox Sports Detroit. 7:10 Central start time.

Tags: Chicago White Sox

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