Let’s be honest and realistic about Chicago White Sox expectations for now. The rebuild is over but it’s only spring training. Lets not jump to conclusions or bring back the Moncada bust language yet.
Monday’s game against the Padres was the first glimpse of the South Side’s biggest pitching addition. Dallas Keuchel threw 50 pitches in 4 innings, gave up 6 hits, 1 earned, 0 walks, 1 strikeout and was charged with the loss. The very first batter Keuchel faced hit a double to left field which later turned into his one earned run. Keuchel forced six groundouts and two forceouts. In the fourth, Keuchel threw a wild pitch allowing a runner to advance to third with only one out. After the inning was over Keuchel was done.
Not known to be a strikeout artist Keuchel is gonna keep Moncada and Anderson busy and they need to limit the errors. Last season Anderson lead the league in Errors and Moncada didn’t do so well either with fifteen. Lets hope this isn’t a recipe for disaster. If there’s ever a time for Anderson to win gold gloves it’s these next three years.
Most of the time Keuchel was behind in the count and had very few swinging strikes. If a spring training start was in a dictionary, this would be it. Beyond the stats, it looked as if he was throwing at 65 to 85 percent and it was the first thing that came to mind. But this was a casual outing. After the game he said, “I wasn’t really aiming at a certain inning or certain pitch. It was kind of, go out there and see how I feel.”
Regardless of one spring training game the White Sox fielding needs massive improvements. Part of Keuchel’s huge success relies on a solid infield. Last season the Sox were last in putouts, second to last in fielding percentage and finished with the fourth highest in errors with 117.
The good news is that Keuchel is healthy, ahead of schedule and this is spring training.
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