The White Sox look to begin their march toward a brighter future with an Opening Day matchup against the Royals on Thursday. There will be a lot of reasons tune in, none larger than the debut of elite prospect Eloy Jimenez, who is starting in left field and batting fifth for his first big league game.
Jimenez’s debut serves as the exclamation point for the season opener after he agreed to a long-term deal that negated the incentives of leaving him in the minors to start the year. The 22-year-old has mashed everywhere he’s been and looks primed to hit dingers all over Guaranteed Rate Field for years to come.
However, that won’t happen Thursday because the Sox are on the road at Kauffman Stadium in Kansas City. The home opener will be next Thursday when the Mariners come to Chicago.
Both of the starting pitchers taking the mound Thursday are making their Opening Day debuts.
Carlos Rodon, who’s looking to finally put it all together after four up-and-down seasons, will start for the Sox. The 26-year-old recorded a 4.18 ERA with 90 strikeouts and 55 walks in 120.2 innings over 20 starts last year.
Brad Keller, an eighth-round pick in the 2013 MLB Draft, quickly ascended the Royals’ depth chart over the last year to become their Opening Day starter. He transitioned to the starting rotation in May 2018 and hasn’t looked back. In 20 starts last year, he posted a 3.28 ERA with 83 strikeouts and 43 walks in 118 innings.
How to watch White Sox vs. Royals, Opening Day 2019
Matchup: Carlos Rodon (White Sox) vs. Brad Keller (Royals)
Location: Kauffman Stadium, Kansas City
TV: NBC Sports Chicago
Live stream: NBC Sports Live