The White Sox did not disappoint in their first game with fans at Guaranteed Rate Field since 2019. Lance Lynn pitched his second career shutout and fourth career complete game as the White Sox cruised to a 6-0 victory over the Kansas City Royals.
Lynn, who the White Sox acquired over the offseason from the Texas Rangers, did not allow a walk and struck out 11. He also had a perfect game through four innings and allowed just five singles.
“Yeah, starters the first time-and-a-half through the rotation, we haven’t done what we’re expected to do and are capable of,” Lynn said after the game. “It’s in their court. I started it.”
Lynn made sure to give his teammates motivation going forward. The White Sox starters have had a bit of trouble going deep into games. The furthest any starter went prior to Thursday’s game was five and a third. The bullpen needed a break badly and on Thursday they got it.
“There wasn’t much of a conversation,” Lynn said. “[La Russa] looked at me and said, ‘Are you good?’ And I said, ‘I’m going to finish it. Does that sound good?’ And he said, ‘Yeah.’ That was pretty much it. I was under 100 pitches so I had plenty left.”
The White Sox traded for Lynn in the offseason for his ability to go deep into games. Moreover, he is first in innings pitched, starts and batters faced since 2019.
It was the first complete game in a White Sox home opener since April 19, 1985, when Britt Burns did it. Who was the White Sox manager that game? Tony La Russa. It was also the first shutout for a White Sox home opener since Wilbur Wood threw one on April 9, 1976.
The game began after a two-hour and 12-minute rain delay. The offense erupted in the first inning, with Yoan Moncada and Yermin Mercedes hitting back-to-back home runs. The 9,000 people in the crowd roared when Moncada sent his first blast of the season. Yermin Mercedes followed it up with a 485-foot moonshot of his own.
Mercedes just keeps on producing. Furthermore, he has a hit in every game he has played in. The White Sox were worried about their depth, especially at DH, but Mercedes is giving them the production they need. The White Sox are very grateful that they found a spot in the middle of their lineup in place of the missing Eloy Jimenez.
Mercedes got to perform in front of White Sox fans for the first time. He took advantage of every moment of it. “They love me right now,” Mercedes said after his performance.
Above all, Tony La Russa stated his excitement in his return to the south side. “That’s the kind of opener for, whatever 30-some years, that’s what you want,” La Russa said. “But to do it coming back here was like Fantasy Island because it usually doesn’t work that way.”
“From Our Haus to Yours”