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White Sox vs. Cubs: Young guns set to take mound

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Today begins a three-game series with the Chicago White Sox visiting the Chicago Cubs at Wrigley for their first meetings of the season, bringing an end to the “first half” of the regular season before the All-Star break begins.

Before this series begins today at 3:05 CT, let’s take a look at the pitching matchup for Friday, with the Cubs entering this series at 46-38, while the White Sox are 39-44 overall.

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Away from U.S. Cellular Field this season, the “Good Guys” are 16-27. At home, the Cubs are 24-18.

Last season the White Sox won the Crosstown Classic Cup by winning three of the four games played.

Jun 30, 2015; New York City, NY, USA; Chicago Cubs starting pitcher Kyle Hendricks (28) pitches against the New York Mets during the second inning at Citi Field. Mandatory Credit: Adam Hunger-USA TODAY Sports

Friday’s pitching matchup will be  Carlos Rodon for the White Sox(4-2, 4.18 ERA) vs. Kyle Hendricks (4-4, 3.82 ERA).

This season, Rodon has 62 strikeouts in 13 games, 10 starts (60.1 IP) compared to 75 by Hendricks in 16 starts (92 IP).

Neither pitcher has faced their opposition in this year of 2015, with Rodon this season having a WHIP of 1.64, but in his past seven games, his WHIP is 1.53 in 38 innings with a 2-2 record.

On his past start on July 5 vs. the Baltimore Orioles, Rodon went five innings, allowing three earned runs on four hits and four walks … not his best outing of his career. Rodon did strike out seven batters in the loss.

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In a start on June 25 at the Detroit Tigers, the lefty had a no-decision in five innings, a game where he allowed four earned runs on eight hits and three walks.

Though Rodon hasn’t had his “best stuff,” the left-handed rookie has pitched serviceable while trying to figure out the MLB game and will pitch just fine as the season continues.

Hendricks hasn’t allowed an earned run in his past two outings (13.1 IP) in games at the New York Mets and vs. the Miami Marlins. Versus the Marlins on July 5 at Wrigley Field, the right-handed Hendricks allowed no runs on five hits and one walk in 7.1 innings with six strikeouts during the winning effort.

On June 30 at the Mets, he had a similar outing with no earned runs allowed on three hits and one walk. That was a game where he struck out six batters in six innings, also a winning effort.

Friday’s series opener should be exciting between two young, up-and-coming pitchers who will most likely become an important part of the Crosstown Classic rivalry for the next few seasons.

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