Gamethread: White Sox at Twins

After what was a great series against the Houston Astros this week, the Sox could not build on that success as they lost a four-game series to the Angels over the weekend. But never fear, IvĂĄn Nova is here to put them back on track as it is now money time for Nova the rest of the year.

Not only does Nova have a chance to earn $2 million more dollars, his recent stretch might earn him a new contract. Over his last five starts, which covers 37 innings, he only has a 0.49 ERA (two earned runs) and four starts that had at least a 73 Game Score, per FanGraphs. Now, if you were to look at the peripherals (I do not advise that you do) you might think a crash is coming and coming soon. His FIP over the same 37 innings is good (3.73 FIP), just not 0.49 ERA good. However, the xFIP is not good, at all, at 4.92. Much of Nova’s success is based off of things that can be termed as luck. The BABIP has fallen from .339 his first 20 starts to .168 over his five. He also is not striking out more batters so he truly is relying more on batted balls for outs.

But there is a lot of good obviously which is why there’s a chance he’s pitching his way onto the staff next season, especially for a team with a lot of bad and injured pitchers. He’s allowed more ground balls, not a lot, but it is a positive difference nonetheless. His home runs in general and per fly ball have drastically fallen as well, though, probably not at a sustainable rate for Nova, but it seems like the increased usage of his sinker is doing what it’s supposed to do, get weaker contact on the ground (now only if Dylan Covey could do that).

Nova’s last start against the Twins was one of his brilliant performances. He went six innings and did not allow a run off of two hits. The Sox as a whole have not done well against the Twinkies with a 3-7 head-to-head record, but at least Nova has done well recently against them.

Kyle Gibson is on the mound for Minnesota and he has not progressed as much as I’m sure Twins’ brass thought after a great 2018 season. However, Gibson apparently saves his best for the White Sox. In 13 innings pitched against the Sox this year, he has only allowed two runs along with 18 strikeouts. I’m sure he’s not the only pitcher over-performing against the Pale Hose, but he has been especially good. But something does have to give in the Nova and Gibson matchup tonight.

Lineups:

Watch on WGN and listen on WGN 720, 7:10 p.m. CT.

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Darren Black (or Darren Jackson), newly 23 and graduated from Illinois State University, yes, the team that beat Northwestern football in 2016 to a blistering 9-7 score. He majored in history over there and still pretends he is proficient in Chicago Manual Style. He is a Dylan Covey stan for life(if he was on the Astros you all know he would be fantastic). Professionally, not a writer, and unprofessionally, still not a writer, but happy to do so when it's about the White Sox. "Be the second plumber" - Mr. Schwerman

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Ashley Sanders
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The fact that Nova kept the Twins to two runs is pretty good

Ashley Sanders
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Ashley Sanders
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Two-out damage!!

Ashley Sanders
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Ashley Sanders
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ÂĄPito!

Joe Resis
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Joe Resis
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It’s nice to see him crushing it again.

whitesoxski
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whitesoxski
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Too much air traffic for comfort over MSP tonight. Get that sinker back, please, Mr. Nova, sir.

Ashley Sanders
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Ashley Sanders
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Nova has settled down since the first. Keep it up, IvĂĄn!

WIN05
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WIN05
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Excellent pre game, Mr. DJ. This site is going to be awesome when it gets rolling. Sox offense fast asleep after the 4 spot.

WIN05
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WIN05
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Goins throw somehow worked out with a great McCann tag. I was surprised that Sano was so close to the plate.

Brett Ballantini
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right on, WIN

Ashley Sanders
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Ashley Sanders
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NICE THROW BY GOINS!

Ashley Sanders
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Ashley Sanders
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What a fantastic pick and tag by McCann! Wow!

whitesoxski
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whitesoxski
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Cordero brings back the sink, McCann brings the killer catch, block and tag, and Skrillex on the PA system proves useless. Yessss

WIN05
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WIN05
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Twins have as much obnoxious in inning music as the Sox do. Even the same tracks.

Ashley Sanders
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Ashley Sanders
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Yolmer comes through 😎

Wow, a two-strike suicide

WIN05
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WIN05
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That took nerve. It did seem like Yolmer was never going to hit the ball to the outfield.

Brett Ballantini
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Ball was at eye-level. Brilliant.

WIN05
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WIN05
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Somehow, the Sox still up by 2.

whitesoxski
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whitesoxski
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Bummer once again failing to live up to his name with that killer sequence vs. Sano. Looked like a closer there. Several thumbs up.

Ashley Sanders
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Ashley Sanders
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This would be a great game to win after a deis al Angels series. Keep with it, Sox!

Ashley Sanders
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Ashley Sanders
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*drismal not deis al

Oh, autocorrect

Ashley Sanders
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Ashley Sanders
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Let’s keep this going! Nice, Eloy!

Ashley Sanders
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Ashley Sanders
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Wow, good catch in right. Robs McCann of 2 RBI

WIN05
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WIN05
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Last out a little scary but a nice job by Marshall. With the Twins and their home runs, a lead can disappear quickly.

Ashley Sanders
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Ashley Sanders
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Come on, Alex, one more out.

Ashley Sanders
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Ashley Sanders
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THE SOX WIN IN THE TWIN CITIES!

WIN05
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WIN05
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I was expecting the worst as the 9th inning went on. The Twins did a lot more to win the game but sometimes it doesn’t work out. Good.