The White Sox return to Houston for Game 2 after the Astros handedly took game 1 yesterday. Lance Lynn didn’t have his best stuff and the young, inexperienced White Sox stars looked tight in the opening game of the playoffs. The Astros do not lack experience when it comes to playoff baseball and they showed that yesterday.
I think we’re going to see a different White Sox team today. They will face off against lefty Framber Valdez. The White Sox have hit him well in their two matchups this year. Valdez pitched well in the Astros playoff run last year with a 3-1 record and a 1.88 ERA. It’s no secret that the White Sox bats love facing lefties. Early in the season and into last season they went 22-1 against left handed starters. They cooled off against them as the year went on, but they still hit an impressive .262 average against them.
The White Sox will trot out their ace in Lucas Giolitio. Giolito is the hottest White Sox pitcher as he ended the Regular season on a tear with a 2.56 ERA in his last 10 starts. Gio has loved playing in Houston at Minute Maid park in his career posting a 1.57 ERA in 3 starts. Gio shouldn’t lack any confidence against this star studded Astros lineup as in his lone start against them this year he pitched a complete game limiting the Astros to 3 hits. Gio was dominant in his first career playoff start last year getting the win and only allowing 1 earned run. Expect him to build off of that game and come out sharp today.
There are a couple of splits in this game that jump out and will turn some heads and attract people to taking the Astros today. Although having 93 wins, The White Sox had a losing record against teams better than .500 this year. They also were barely .500 in road games this year.
Throw those stats in the trash. The White Sox are winning this game. This is a young White Sox team that lacks post season experience. They got the nerves and jitters out of the way yesterday and can just settle in and play baseball today. Their offense is two dynamic to be held down for long, and they have their true ace on the mound. I expect the White Sox bats to come out swinging and for them to lean on Giolito to a victory.
Sox 5 Astros 3