Spring Training Game Preview and Thread #-12: Brewers (8-11) v White Sox (6-8)

Alan Crowhurst

Today with extra green.

Today is St. Patrick's Day so, per tradition, baseball will be played in green uniforms.

The Brewers will take the mound in green at 3:05 Central time today with Kyle Lohse (3.60 ERA this spring, 3.35/4.08 ERA/FIP in 2013) on the mound. Lohse pitched in a minor league game the last time his rotation spot was due up, so this is his first MLB game since March 6. He pitched three innings in that one, allowing two runs on three hits with no walks and no strikeouts.

Forget luck of the Irish, a lot of pitchers would love to have the "luck" of Kyle Lohse. He's outperformed his expected outcomes as predicted by FIP (Fielder Independent Pitching) and xFIP (Expected Fielder Independent Pitching) in each of the last three seasons:

Season ERA FIP xFIP
2011 3.37 3.67 4.04
2012 2.86 3.51 3.96
2013 3.35 4.08 4.03

As a longtime member of the Twins, Lohse has 23 career appearances against the White Sox. The last one, however, came in 2006. Two current members of the team have faced him ten times or more:

PA AB H 2B 3B HR RBI BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS
Paul Konerko 55 50 6 0 0 2 2 5 7 .120 .200 .240 .440
Jeff Keppinger 13 12 5 3 0 0 6 0 0 .417 .417 .667 1.083
Total 81 73 15 5 0 3 13 7 9 .205 .275 .397 .672
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Play Index Tool Used
Generated 3/17/2014.

He'll face 30-year-old righty Felipe Paulino (9.72 ERA this spring, did not pitch in majors in 2013), in camp with the White Sox as a reclamation project. Paulino hasn't pitched in the majors since June 6, 2012 and has undergone both Tommy John and shoulder surgery since then. He faced the Giants on Wednesday and allowed two runs on five hits over 3.2 innings.

The White Sox would be Paulino's fourth MLB team, as he's been a member of the Astros, Rockies and Royals since 2010. He has a career 4.93 ERA over 93 outings and has walked over three and a half batters per nine innings over that time. He throws a mid-90's fastball but relies heavily on a slider while also mixing in the occasional curve and changeup.

Paulino has a career 7.52 ERA in seven appearances against the Brewers, but hasn't faced them in a regular season game since 2011. Two current Brewers have faced him ten times or more:

PA AB H 2B 3B HR RBI BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS
Ryan Braun 14 12 5 0 1 1 3 1 1 .417 .500 .833 1.333
Rickie Weeks 12 11 3 0 0 0 0 1 1 .273 .333 .273 .606
Total 52 48 13 0 1 1 7 2 7 .271 .314 .375 .689
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Play Index Tool Used
Generated 3/17/2014.

Mike Vassallo has today's lineup:

The weather in Phoenix remains spectacular for baseball, although the wind has picked up a bit today. Expect a game-time temperature around 79 with winds blowing out around 10 mph.

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