There’s well over 100 hours left before the non-waiver trade deadline, so just because the only move the White Sox have pulled off so far is swapping Matt Thornton at his lowest value in years for a lottery ticket, toolsy outfielder, doesn’t mean it’s time to get surly about missed opportunities for trade deadline bounties or an organization resistant to rebuilding even in obvious circumstances.
After all, this is the organization that produced Chris Sale. Any organization that drafted and developed Chris Sale has to have some fragment of genius buried inside of it.
By nearly every measure imaginable, Sale has stepped it up a notch this season after his tremendous debut and has a 2.85 ERA against the Royals for his career. His strikeouts are up, his walks are down, his groundballs are up, his workload is going to surpass last season and his velocity is up.
The White Sox have also won five of the seven starts he’s made against Kansas City. For some reason I imagined they had spurned more of his efforts against the Royals, but that’s what the trauma of blowing a division will do.
White Sox lineup
Chris Sale, SP
In a heinous violation of platoon ideals, Jeff Keppinger is getting the start at third base against right-handed Wade Davis despite Bruce Chen being the scheduled hurler for tomorrow. Conor Gillaspie had two hits and home run Friday night and is generally one of the least frustrating guys to watch on this team day-in, day-out.
Davis being so bad that it possibly doesn’t matter is some comfort, but the Sox are hardly in position to take things for granted. Also, Gillaspie is just more interesting for this organization to see play going forward, Keppinger’s contract be damned.
Kansas City Royals Lineup
Wade Davis, SP
After being so worthless against left-handers last season that intentionally walking Jeff Francouer to face him was a statistically sound move most of the time, Eric Hosmer has reversed his platoon splits this season. There was no way to tell that from Friday night, though. Jose Quintana‘s slider, typically a fringey offering, made Hosmer look terrible on multiple occasions, and if he’s having trouble picking up that pitch from the left side, this will not be a fun night for him.
Where to Watch: WGN in Chicago, Fox Sports Kansas City if you drive a few hundred miles south.
Follow James Fegan on Twitter @JRFegan