Next Up: Miguel Gonzalez – Game Preview & Lineups 5/9

Recently, the White Sox faced the Rangers at U.S. Cellular Field, and the results heavily favored the home team, as they completed a sweep against the then-first place Texas team, outscoring them 13-4. The matchup this time around isn’t likely to be quite that friendly. The home team advantage obviously shifts, the Sox are presenting the lesser portion of their rotation while facing the Rangers’ ace in the finale, and frankly, sweeps are difficult enough; sweeping the same team twice within a matter of weeks is an even tougher ask. But they will play, and they will try.

Miguel Gonzalez has done his time at Triple-A Charlotte and will now try to permanently take the place of John Danks where Erik Johnson failed to. Gonzalez wasn’t necessarily impressive in his first attempt at a start with the White Sox, but he did he flash some tools that might enable him to produce a quality start or two without the benefit of pure luck. After getting touched early by a very strong Toronto offense, Gonzalez was able to regroup and get himself into the sixth inning, an accomplishment that helped push the Sox toward victory. This is what is being asked of him, preferably without the pronounced blips in the early innings; pitch yourself a reasonably OK that-wasn’t-so-bad five innings and the team is in decent shape.

For their part in this contest, the Rangers are sending out Colby Lewis. Lewis has started six games so far this year and only has two decisions to show for it. The scales of fortune are not out to get him though. He’s outperforming his FIP (3.32 ERA vs 5.34 FIP) by enough that despite an ERA+ being well above average, cFIP thinks he’s a good bet to be purely average from here on out. He did face the Sox in Chicago last month, allowing just one run over six innings despite walking four along with his six hits, the lone run coming via a Melky Cabrera home run. Lewis is many years old, and his best years appear to be behind him, but the White Sox have not been able to score more than two runs against him in any start since 2010. In the time since he’s thrown two shutouts, and last month’s Sox victory was the first time they’ve won a game that Colby Lewis started since 2010 as well.

Alex Avila is back in the lineup, fresh off of a rehab assignment. Offensive contributions from Avila to this point have been light, but he does provide the service of squatting for a few hours so that Navarro doesn’t have to, and does so without completely sabotaging the chances for victory.

White Sox Lineup:

  1. Adam Eaton – RF
  2. Jimmy Rollins – SS
  3. Jose Abreu – 1B
  4. Todd Frazier – 3B
  5. Melky Cabrera – LF
  6. Brett Lawrie – 2B
  7. Avisail Garcia – DH
  8. Alex Avila – C
  9. Austin Jackson – CF

Rangers Lineup:

  1. Rougned Odor – 2B
  2. Nomar Mazara – RF
  3. Adrian Beltre – 3B
  4. Prince Fielder – DH
  5. Ian Desmond – LF
  6. Mitch Moreland – 1B
  7. Elvis Andrus – SS
  8. Bobby Wilson – C
  9. Delino DeShields – CF

Today’s game will be broadcast on WPWR and FSSW at 7:05 p.m.
Lead Photo Credit: Nick Turchiaro – USA Today Sports Images

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