First Pitch: K.C. in April? Trouble for Gavin

First Pitch: K.C. in April? Trouble for Gavin

Tuesday, April 5, 2011Posted: 6:35 p.m.

By Brett Ballantini
CSNChicago.com

KANSAS CITY Look for the top of the White Sox order, along with No. 8 hitter Alexei Ramirez, to do most of the damage vs. Kansas City Royals starter Luke Hochevarwho has solid career marks vs. the Pale Hose.

Luke Hochevars splits

In April (month worsts in OPSWHIP): 3-3, 5.89 ERA, .890 OPS, 1.74 WHIP, 1.88 KBB
Vs. the White Sox: 3-3, 3.65 ERA, .656 OPS, 1.24 WHIP, 1.38 KBB
At Kauffman Stadium: 10-16, 4.40 ERA, .740 OPS, 0.98 WHIP, 1.27 KBB

White Sox vs. Hochevar

Juan Pierre, lf: 3-6, 1.071 OPS
Gordon Beckham, 2b: 4-11, HR, 1.098 OPS
Adam Dunn, dh
Paul Konerko, 1b: 2-15, .483 OPS
Alex Rios, cf: 1-14, two Ks, .205 OPS
Carlos Quentin, rf: 2-8, .500 OPS
A.J. Pierzynski, c: 2-14, .286 OPS
Alexei Ramirez, ss: 6-13, 1.101 OPS
Brent Morel, 3b

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Gavin Floyd has suffered terribly in the month of April and at the hands of the Royals. Nearly everyone in K.C.s lineup has his the young righthander hard, even super-small sample size hitters like Matt Treanor and Jeff Francoeur.

Gavin Floyds splits

In April (all but record are career month worsts): 8-8, 6.30 ERA, .829 OPS, 1.63 WHIP, 1.23 KBB
Vs. Royals: 3-7, 4.79 ERA, .752 OPS, 1.35 WHIP, 3.20 KBB
At Kauffman Stadium: 1-4, 6.62 ERA, .808 OPS, 1.44 WHIP, 3.14 KBB

Royals vs. Floyd

Mike Aviles, 3b: 6-21, .681 OPS
Melky Cabrera, cf: 3-9, HR, two RBI, 1.178 OPS
Alex Gordon, lf: 4-12, HR, two RBI, 1.051 OPS
Billy Butler, dh: 7-27, .570 OPS, five RBI
Kila Kaaihue, lb: 1-3, 1.667 OPS
Jeff Francoeur, rf: 4-6, HR, two RBI, 1.833 OPS
Alcides Escobar, ss
Matt Treanor, c: 2-4, HR, three RBI, 2.100 OPS
Chris Getz, 2b: 2-3, 1.333 OPS

Brett Ballantini is CSNChicago.coms White Sox Insider. Follow him @CSNChi_Beatnik on Twitter for up-to-the-minute Sox information.

White Sox announcer Jason Benetti cracks Crain's 40 under 40

White Sox announcer Jason Benetti cracks Crain's 40 under 40

Crain's Chicago Business released its latest 40 under 40 project and White Sox announcer Jason Benetti made this year's list.

The 33-year-old just finished his first season with the White Sox as play-by-play announcer, working the home games at U.S. Cellular Field (before it was renamed Guaranteed Rate Field last month) alongside Steve Stone as longtime broadcaster Hawk Harrelson saw his workload reduced to mostly road games.

Benetti quickly became a fan favorite among Chicagoans on CSN and other networks in 2016 and his cerebral palsy became more of a backstory, with his work alongside Stone and his affable sense of humor taking center stage instead.

Among other topics, Benetti discussed how he approaches his job of broadcasting for the team he grew up rooting for:

Law school taught me that there are always two sides of the argument. I see it from the Sox prism, but I can’t believe in my heart of hearts that, if the Sox lose, the world’s over anymore. That first game, I was like, “All right, it’s just a game.” And then Avi Garcia hits a homer late in the game against the Indians and I call it like I would call it with a little more. And as the ball cleared the fence, when it was rolling around, I got a slight tear in my eye. And I was like, “What’s that?”

Check out the entire interview with Benetti and the full list at ChicagoBusiness.com.

White Sox reportedly asking for No. 1 prospect plus more in trade return for Chris Sale

White Sox reportedly asking for No. 1 prospect plus more in trade return for Chris Sale

The White Sox could be open for business when the Winter Meetings begin on Sunday in Maryland, with ace left-hander Chris Sale likely to draw the most interest at the Gaylord National Resort and Convention Center. 

The price for the five-time All-Star, of course, will be steep. ESPN’s Jayson Stark offered this as to just how steep it’ll be: To acquire Sale, a team will have to part with its No. 1 prospect plus at least two more players. 

The starting point for the White Sox, according to Stark, will be last offseason’s Shelby Miller trade in which the Arizona Diamondbacks sent former No. 1 overall pick Dansby Swanson to the Atlanta Braves to acquire the 26-year-old right-hander. 

Miller was coming off a strong season in 2015, in which he crossed the 200-inning threshold for the first time and posted a career best 3.02 ERA. But Miller hadn’t come close to establishing the success Sale has at the time of the trade, spending just three seasons in the starting rotations of the Braves and St. Louis Cardinals without eye-popping peripherals (he had a 4.54 FIP in 2014, for example). And the Braves still managed to swipe Swanson away from a Diamondbacks team that went all in for the 2016 season (and crashed to a 69-93 record with Miller having a 6.15 ERA). 

Only three pitchers — Clayton Kershaw, Max Scherzer and David Price — have racked up more WAR than Sale (26.2) since the start of the 2012 season, and Sale is one of seven starters to have 1,000 or more strikeouts over the last five seasons, too. Durability hasn’t been an issue for Sale, either, as he’s tied for second in baseball with 14 complete games since 2012 (only behind Kershaw) and has thrown the 12th-most innings of any pitcher in the last five years, too. 

That’s the Cliff’s Notes version of why Sale will command such a high price. So that’s why, on MLB Network on Friday, Jon Heyman threw out the following names that could be discussed: Washington Nationals infielder/outfielder Trea Turner, Houston Astros infielder Alex Bregman, Boston Red Sox outfielders Andrew Benintendi and Jackie Bradley Jr. and Red Sox infielder Yoan Moncada. 

Not only are those guys top prospects, but every one them outside of Moncada has had more than a cup of coffee in the major leagues. Whether or not the White Sox could pry one of those players, or someone of their caliber, away from a team in a Sale trade remains to be seen. 

The price may come down, as Stark reported, but the starting point in the Sale sweepstakes certainly appears to be high.