Johnny Cueto

Dallas Keuchel White Sox' No. 5 Starter, Johnny Cueto Opens in AAA

Cueto to open in AAA, Sox map out initial rotation originally appeared on NBC Sports Chicago

The White Sox' initial starting rotation is coming into focus leading up to Friday's Opening Day.

White Sox manager Tony La Russa told reporters in Arizona on Tuesday Dallas Keuchel will slot is as the team's No. 5 starter.

La Russa on Monday named Lucas Giolito his Opening Day starter and said Dylan Cease and Michael Kopech will follow in the rotation, starting Saturday and Sunday against the Tigers.

That leaves the Sox' starter in Tuesday's home opener as to-be determined. Lance Lynn could be out through May with a torn tendon in his right knee that will require surgery.

Reynaldo López and Vince Velasquez are options to start and cover innings and are potential options for Tuesday's home opener. However, that could depend on the Sox' bullpen needs against the Tigers.

Kopech has made one start this spring, a two-inning outing, and there are concerns around pitcher workloads across baseball in wake of the lockout and shortened spring training.

The White Sox have agreed to a deal with veteran right-hander Johnny Cueto in wake of Lynn's injury, although he will begin the season with Triple-A Charlotte, La Russa said Tuesday, as he ramps up.

As far as how much time Cueto will need to build up before joining the Sox, La Russa told reporters "hopefully not long."

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