Save Us, Hector! – Lineups 6/16


The state of the White Sox is such that in losing a couple of games to the Astros I find myself wishing Houston was still in the national league, and that this was an interleague game. Give the pitcher a chance to bat, slow them down, and maybe improve the Sox a little bit. Yes, I’m joking, but the offense could also be called a joke. A little fun with sample sizes and selective data for you: Jeff Keppinger has enough plate appearances to qualify for the batting title and a wRC+ of 25. No pitchers have as many plate appearances obviously, but for pitchers with 20 or more plate appearances, 7 of them have a higher wRC+ than Keppinger. 2 of them higher than Alexei Ramirez and Paul Konerko. Alejandro De Aza and Adam Dunn are creeping up on league average with 93 and 91 but as has been the case for many weeks, there is only one hitter above the average line, and that’s Alex Rios. There are a pair of pitchers in Travis Wood and Clayton Kershaw. Well what the hell, Matt? The pitchers only have to get 20 plate appearances to qualify for your comparison! Well let’s lower the White Sox offensive threshold to the same. One group’s top ten ranges from 120-62, while the other from 145-46. Which is which? Trick question, it doesn’t really matter. Neither is very good. There are more pitchers to choose from than White Sox batters if you were looking for further reinforcement that the paragraph you just read was utterly useless but the takeaway here, which you came with in the first place, is that the Sox offense is awful.

Now for the men who won’t be batting this afternoon. Hector Santiago has seen plenty of variance in his role, flip-flopping from the bullpen to the rotation a number of times so far. He’s accepted the challenge and been effective from both ends, keeping the runs low and keeping the strikeout rate high. In his last outing, a start against Oakland, he baffled Athletics hitters allowing just 1 earned run (2 total) and striking out 6 in 6.1 innings en route to a victory.

Dallas Keuchel has seen some similar variance in his pitching role and he’s managed to not embarrass himself entirely. Looking at his most recent outing, it appears he’s got an issue with copying Hector. 6 innings, 1 earned run (2 total) while striking out 6 in 6 innings. His best outing of the season jump started the 4 game sweep of Anaheim a couple of weeks ago as went 7 innings and allowed just 2.

Today’s Lineup:

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

Houston Astros Lineup:

1.Brandon Barnes – CF
2.Jose Altuve – 2B
3.Jason Castro – DH
4.Carlos Corporan – C
5.Chris Carter – LF
6.Carlos Pena – 1B
7.Trevor Crowe – RF
8.Matt Dominguez – 3B
9.Marwin Gonzalez – SS

Where to Watch
Today’s game will be broadcast on CSN. 1:10 Central start time.