In his final start of the season, Sonny Gray will try to avoid letting the White Sox (90-68) hit any more home runs this week as the Cincinnati Reds (82-76) look to rebound from last night’s 7-1 loss. The Reds are going for the two-game series split on the south side of Chicago tonight.
- First pitch: 8:10 P.M. ET
- Location: Guaranteed Rate Field
- TV: Bally Sports Ohio
- Radio: 700 WLW
- Weather: 64 degrees and clear skies
Gray has battled through a couple of injuries over the course of the 2021 season, but has still pitched 130.2 innings with an ERA just under 4.00. His expected stats are a little lower than his actual stats, so his numbers could be even better. He’s coming off a start on Friday night against the Washington Nationals where he pitched only four innings and gave up four runs on five hits, including two home runs, in just four innings. The good news for Gray is that he’s pitched better on the road, with a 2.89 ERA in 60.2 innings compared to a 4.89 ERA in 70.0 innings at Great American Ball Park.
Left-hander Carlos Rodón is having one of the best years of his career. Through the month of June, Rodón had an ERA of 2.06. He threw a no-hitter, on April 14 against the Cleveland Indians, and earned a spot on the All-Star team in July. But Rodón has also thrown a lot of innings this year. He’s thrown 127.2 innings, the most since 2018 when he threw 120.2 innings. As a result, he went on the injured list with left shoulder fatigue in the middle of August, but has since returned and has made three starts in September. Before going on the injured list, Rodón was pitching every fifth day. In September, he’s pitched every ninth day and only about four or five innings each start.
The key to Rodón’s success this season has been his strikeout percentage. It’s up to 35.1% on the season, by far the best of his career and the top four percent in the league. He’s throwing his four-seam fastball around 95 mph. This is increased velocity from the last two years by about three percent. Rodón’s throwing his fastball harder and faster than in the past, and it’s paying off for him.
Rodón’s a lefty, so don’t expect too much for Reds hitters tonight. Nick Castellanos, however, does has one home and three RBI in eight at-bats against him. (And of course, he’s getting a night off tonight).
Chicago White Sox
|2B Jonathan India||SS Tim Anderson|
|C Tyler Stephenson||CF Luis Robert|
|3B Eugenio Suárez||1B Jose Abreu|
|SS Kyle Farmer||C Yasmani Grandal|
|CF Jose Barrero||LF Eloy Jiménez|
|DH Delino Deshields Jr.||3B Yoan Moncada|
|RF Aristides Aquino||2B Leury Garcia|
|1B Max Schrock||DH Gavin Sheets|
|LF TJ Friedl||RF Adam Engel|
News and Notes
The Reds announced a starter for Sunday’s game in Pittsburgh. Reiver Sanmartin will get one more chance to pitch in 2021.
Reiver Sanmartin, who beat the Pirates in his big-league debut on Monday, will start for the Reds in Sunday's season finale in Pittsburgh.
Vladimir Gutierrez will be available out of the bullpen for the Pirates series.
— C. Trent Rosecrans (@ctrent) September 29, 2021
Since the Reds were officially eliminated from the playoff race, David Bell decided to sit Nick Castellanos and Joey Votto tonight. You can be upset about that, but regardless of who is in the lineup, the fact of the matter remains: there are only four games left of Reds baseball in 2021. Enjoy it while you still got it. You know you’ll miss it in two months.