White Sox vs. Royals Thursday MLB probable pitchers, odds: Sox ace Dylan Cease on historic streak

White Sox ace Dylan Cease is on the mound this afternoon in Kansas City and could take the AL Cy Young lead with another strong effort
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While the Chicago White Sox have been hugely disappointing this season, it certainly hasn't been the fault of ace right-hander Dylan Cease. He has put together a 13-game pitching run never before seen in MLB history and takes the mound this afternoon in Kansas City as the Sox look for a split of the four-game set. They are -180 favorites at Caesars Sportsbook.

Cease (12-4, 1.98 ERA) allowed seven runs against the Red Sox on May 24 and has been all but untouchable since. The 26-year-old has allowed no more than one earned run in 13 consecutive starts, becoming the first starting pitcher (non-opener) in MLB history to accomplish that feat. Cease had been tied for the mark with the Mets' Jacob deGrom (2021) at 12, but now Cease stands alone after holding the Rangers to one run on two hits over six last Friday.

Cease is 8-2 with a 0.59 ERA over 76 innings in that stretch. He's tallied 95 strikeouts and held his opponents to a .174 average. That ERA is the fourth-best mark in majors since 1913 over any 13-start stretch in the same season. Cease's 1.98 overall ERA is the third-lowest mark by a White Sox pitcher through 22 starts of a season since 1920, trailing Gary Peters (1.50 in 1963) and Tommy John (1.94 in 1968).

That ERA also ranks second in the majors to Justin Verlander's 1.85 – Verlander remains the -175 favorite at Caesars to win the AL Cy Young but wasn't his usual dominant self on Wednesday. He allowed three runs over six innings in a no-decision vs. Texas. 

Cease is +275 to win the Cy Young, and it's not out of the question he passes Verlander as the favorite with another dominant effort this afternoon (other books have Cease closer to Verlander). He is 1-0 with a 1.54 ERA in two starts this year against the Royals and 4-2 with a 2.69 ERA and .207 opponents' average over 11 career starts vs. Kansas City. Chicago is 17-5 in his starts this year, and Cease's five-start winning streak is a career high. The Royals, meanwhile, have homered in eight straight games, their longest run since Aug. 6-17, 2020 (10 games).

Former AL Cy Young Award winner Zack Greinke (3-7, 4.58) starts for KC. He is 9-10 with a 3.94 ERA in 27 career starts (30 appearances) vs. the White Sox, including a pair of no-decisions this season, in which he has allowed five runs in 11.2 innings. Greinke hasn't lost to the White Sox in 13 years, but keep in mind he spent a lot of time in the National League during that stretch.

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