The Chicago White Sox Begin The 2013 Season

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With today being April Fools Day, Mother Nature must be playing a joke on us because it is only 35 degrees here in Chicago today. 35 degrees is the minimum temperature that Major League Baseball allows games to be played in. So let’s just hope and pray that it doesn’t get any colder here at U.S. Cellular Field.

The White Sox still have a bitter taste in their mouths after last season’s August/September collapse which ultimately cost them a trip to the playoffs. They hope not to make the same mistakes in 2013, but they will do it with some new additions to the roster. Kevin Youkilis is no longer the third baseman here on the South Side.

Long-time utility man Jeff Keppinger will man the hot corner this season, last year the right hander suited up for Tampa Bay. Also gone is fan favorite catcher A.J. Pierzynski. Of course A.J. wasn’t always a favorite with his teammates, but today is a new day. Tyler Flowers who spent years either as the backup or in AAA, will finally get his chance to be the full-time starter.

The biggest surprise is that Paul Konerko is still wearing a White Sox uniform. The only question is how much longer will be still be a good guy in black?

There are some other new faces as well, mostly younger players. But most of the core players from 2012 are still on the roster. Today they open the season against the Kansas City Royals. Even though the Royals finished in third place with a below .500 record last season, they gave the White Sox problems all year. They were also instrumental in keeping the Sox out of the postseason.

They come into this year with a blended mix of season veterans and hungry young players. Today everyone is 0-0 with a chance to start fresh and erase the bad memories of 2012. Robin Ventura is in his 2nd season as the White Sox manager. He is glad to finally come home to start the season after a lengthy winter in Arizona. If only the weather could reflect how he feels.

Kansas City is headed by Ned Yost who is in his fourth season as the Royals skipper. He is hoping to get his team above the .500 mark and to become a division contender. Today’s pitching match up will be interesting to say the least. The South Siders will send Chris Sale to the hill this afternoon.

Sale was one of the better pitchers on Robin Ventura’s staff last year. He finished the 2012 campaign with 17 wins, 8 losses, and an earned run average of 3.05. He also had 192 strikeouts to just 51 walks. If he can keep up that consistency this year, the Sox should be in good shape.

Kansas City will counter with 31-year-old right hander James Shields. This is his first year in a Royals uniform as he played in Tampa Bay from 2006-2012. Last year he sported a 15-10 record with a 3.52 ERA.

Here are the rest of the lineups for both teams.

Kansas City:

1. #4 Alex Gordon LF

2. #2 Alcides Escobar SS

3. #16 Billy Butler DH

4. #8 Mike Moustakas 3B

5. #13 Salvador Perez C

6. #35 Eric Hosmer 1B

7. #6 Lorenzo Cain CF

8. #21 Jeff Francoeur RF

9. #17 Chris Getz 2B {Former White Sox player}

White Sox:

1. #30 Alejandro De Aza CF

2. #7 Jeff Keppinger 3B

3. #51 Alex Rios RF

4. #32 Adam Dunn DH

5.#14 Paul Konerko 1B

6. #24 Dayan Viciedo LF

7. #10 Alexei Ramirez SS

8. #21 Tyler Flowers C

9.# 15 Gordon Beckham 2B

You can follow me on Twitter for game update @GabeSalgado82 #Q101Sports


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