White Sox: Dallas Keuchel struggles in his 2021 debut

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ANAHEIM, CALIFORNIA - APRIL 02: Dallas Keuchel #60 of the Chicago White Sox pitches against the Los Angeles Angels during the first inning at Angel Stadium of Anaheim on April 02, 2021 in Anaheim, California. (Photo by Katelyn Mulcahy/Getty Images)
ANAHEIM, CALIFORNIA - APRIL 02: Dallas Keuchel #60 of the Chicago White Sox pitches against the Los Angeles Angels during the first inning at Angel Stadium of Anaheim on April 02, 2021 in Anaheim, California. (Photo by Katelyn Mulcahy/Getty Images) /
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After a tough loss on Thursday night, the Chicago White Sox were set for game two of their opening series against the Los Angeles Angels on Friday night. The pitching staff got off to a great start in game one with the performance of Lucas Giolito. Unfortunately, Dallas Keuchel was not able to match Giolito’s performance.

Keuchel came into this season looking to build upon what was a spectacular 2020 campaign. The former Cy Young winner started 11 games, going 6-2, with a fantastic 1-99 ERA. Of course, that number is affected by the shortened season but it was truly an impressive season for him.

Since his Cy Young season, Keuchel has still been a solid pitcher but in 2020 he was yet again playing at a dominant level. It is safe to say that expectations were relatively high for Keuchel coming into the game.

His night got off to a promising enough start with a strikeout of the first batter he faced in David Fletcher. Shohei Ohtani then reached on a hard-hit ball to the RF wall that was ruled as an error. Mike Trout then brought home Ohtani giving Los Angeles an early 1-0 lead. Keuchel would then get out of the inning with a double-play.

Dallas Keuchel would settle in as the Chicago White Sox bats would give him help.

Keuchel found a nice groove through the second and third inning. Starting off with a nice strikeout of Justin Upton and getting through the inning seeing four batters and giving up just one hit. After a Jose Abreu grand-slam in the top of the third, Keuchel came out of it with a 4-1 lead.

The third inning was much like the second but even better as Keuchel retired the side in order. He also got his third strikeout of the game, this one coming on Ohtani. The offense would help out even more in the fourth inning, scoring three more runs to give Keuchel a commanding 7-1 lead heading into the bottom of the fourth inning.

The fourth inning was a rough one as Keuchel immediately gave up a lead-off double to Trout before walking Upton two batters later. Albert Pujols then made him pay. The future Hall-of-Famer hit a three-run bomb to cut the lead to 7-4. Keuchel and the Sox would get out of the fourth with no further damage.

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Keuchel came out to start the fifth inning but was taken out after giving up a single and a walk consecutively. Of course, he would not factor into the decision but the White Sox would win 12-8 thanks to the offense. Overall, it was not the best game for Keuchel but I would expect him to come out much sharper in start number two.

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