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Cleveland Indians vs Chicago White Sox. Which team will come on top in this AL Central battle?

The Cleveland Indians, who are second in the AL Central, head to Chicago to take on the fourth-place White Sox. Shane Bieber is scheduled to pitch for the Indians and Reynaldo Lopez will take the ball for the White Sox.

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Offensive comparisons

Cleveland has struggled offensively, hitting just .219 as a team with 33 home runs and 3.6 runs per game. Carlos Santana, in his return to Cleveland, leads the team in RBI with 19 and tied with Leonys Martin for the team lead in home runs with five. Francisco Lindor has hit four home runs, while Jose Ramirez and Roberto Perez have added three.

The White Sox have been considerably better at the plate, hitting .253 with 45 home runs and 4.6 runs scored per game. Jose Abreu is leading with nine home runs and already has 35 RBI. Yoan Moncada and Tim Anderson have added seven home runs each with over 40 RBI between them. Yonder Alonso has been a solid contributor with five home runs and 16 RBI.

Pitching comparisons

Shane Bieber is 2-1 with a 3.32 ERA and has an excellent 48-to-13 strikeout-to-walk ratio in 43 1/3 innings. Indians closer Brad Hand has ten saves and has allowed only two earned runs in 16 2/3 innings while striking out 24.  Dan Otero, Nick Wittgren and Tyler Olson have been rock solid as well, combining for a 3.00 ERA in 36 innings. As a team, the Indians are allowing only 3.8 runs per game.

Chicago’s pitching has been generally poor and Reynaldo Lopez hasn’t been an exception. Lopez has a very high ERA of 6.38, allowing 53 hits, 24 walks and nine home runs in 42 1/3 innings. Closer Alex Colome is doing a solid job with seven saves and an ERA under two, however Kevin Herrera, Ryan Burr, Jace Fry, Dylan Covey and Carson Fulmer have a combined ERA of 5.83 in 66 1/3 innings. Chicago has allowed an average of 5.5 runs per game.

Prediction

If anything can get the Indians back on track offensively, it’s the White Sox.  Cleveland has a better road record than the White Sox do at home. This is looking like a five or six-run output for the Indians and four runs for the White Sox. Bet on the Indians to win, but the “over/under” is a toss-up. I’d likely avoid betting on that in this one.

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