- The White Sox and Mariners kick-off a three-game series at T-Mobile park on Monday, April 5th at 10:10pm
- Carlos Rodon gets his first start of the season for Chicago, Justus Sheffield starts for Seattle
- See the odds and best bets below
After dropping three of four to the Angels to open the season, the White Sox West coast swing continues with a trip down to Seattle that kicks off on Monday at 10:10pm EST.
Meanwhile the Mariners get set to kick off their second series of the season, in the thick of a six-game homestand. Seattle got Sunday off after taking two of three from the Giants.
Now Justus Sheffield will make his 2021 debut against Carlos Rodon and an offense that has high expectations in 2021.
White Sox vs Mariners Odds
|Team||Moneyline||Runline at DraftKings||Total|
|Chicago White Sox||-122||-1.5 (+135)||Over 8.5 (-105)|
|Seattle Mariners||+105||+1.5 (-159)||Under 8.5 (-117)|
Odds as of April 4th
The White Sox vs Mariners odds see the White Sox enter as the favorite. In Chicago’s four-game set against Anaheim they were favored twice and lost both. They were 1-1 as the underdog.
Seattle’s first two games saw 15 and nine runs combined respectively, before a 4-0 M’s win to wrap things up.
Rodon’s Rocky Road Back
After being a serviceable mid-rotation arm to open his career, Carlos Rodon has struggled recently. He has an ERA of 5.74 the past two years, that ballooned over eight last season. Rodon’s strikeout numbers are actually better than they were earlier in his career, and while there’s been a slight increase in walks, it isn’t monumental.
Carlos Rodon (1.32 ERA) struck out 16 batters and walked one over 13 2/3 innings this spring.
— Daryl Van Schouwen (@CST_soxvan) March 27, 2021
Over the past two seasons however, his BaBIP has risen to .328, and his GB% has plummeted in favor of line drives when it comes to contact.
What could work in Rodon’s favor though, is the fact that this Mariners lineup has really never seen him before.
Ethan Katz said Carlos Rodón has worked on a strike-grabbing curveball that he can use as a fourth pitch (8-10% usage rate). So, that seems new
— James Fegan (@JRFegan) March 30, 2021
The one catch is Kyle Seager. The third baseman is the only Mariner to have faced Rodon before and even that is limited: he’s just 2-for-3 against him. So the inexperience of Seattle’s lineup and a ballpark that ranked in the bottom half of the league in home runs and extra base hits (per ESPN) could play in Rodon’s favor during his debut.
Justus Searching for Revenge
For Justus Sheffield, 2020 was an important year.
After a rocky debut to close out 2019 that saw him sport a 5.50 ERA and a 4.71 FIP, Sheffield looked entirely different in 2020. He dropped his ERA down to 3.58, and shaved a full point off of his HR/9 and BB/9. But keeping that 2019 season in mind, the White Sox were one of the teams that contributed to Sheffield’s struggles.
White Sox vs Justus Sheffield
That outing against the White Sox is fairly odd when you look at the final line. Sheffield struck out eight and walked one. The one home run he gave up was to Adam Engel. Sheffield actually retired nine-straight to start the game before the wheels eventually fell off in the fifth.
Pitchers who threw 750 pitches or more and allowed 2 home runs or fewer in the 2020 season.
— Inside Edge (@IE_MLB) March 31, 2021
That was when Engel, who’s currently on the Injured List, homered and Anderson, Moncada and Abreu hit consecutive singles.
Granted the White Sox offense was brutal on Sunday. They stranded 10 runners and went 0-for-11 with runners in scoring position. But they were also contending with a locked in Shohei Ohtani.
Surviving the Second Time Through
Sheffield’s issues in that first match-up with Chicago started just as he finished his second time through the lineup. It’s territory he struggled with in 2020 as well.
Opponents hit .338 seeing him a second time, with Sheffield’s strikeout rate getting cut in half. Unsurprisingly Sheffield’s ERA was 7.00 in the fourth inning with opponents hitting .359 off of him.
This season, the White Sox have dominated the second time through the lineup. They hit .381 and slugging .571 with a home run and six RBI through the first three games against the Angels. If a starter makes it a third time through the order, the Sox are still making them pay.
Sox Offense Will Strike
For the most part, Sheffield was very good during Spring Training. He did struggle with command at times, issuing eight walks over his final 11 innings.
It wouldn’t be surprising to see the control issues creep into his first start. And if that happens, the White Sox could get to the bullpen very quickly.
In a pitcher’s park, the total can sometimes be daunting, so stick with the Sox outright on Monday.
The Pick: Chicago White Sox (-122)
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