Chicago White Sox get strong pitching from Jonathan Cannon and Erick Fedde in doubleheader split

Chicago White Sox starter Jonathan Cannon stood on the back of the mound before making his major-league debut Wednesday in Game 1 of a doubleheader against the Kansas City Royals.

“(I) looked around and tried to take it all in,” said Cannon, a third-round pick in 2022. “It was very, very enjoyable.”

Cannon displayed poise throughout the outing, allowing one run on three hits in five innings. But the Sox couldn’t hold on to a late lead, falling 4-2 in the opener at Guaranteed Rate Field.

Salvador Perez hit a two-run homer off reliever Michael Kopech in the eighth inning, which gave the Royals a 3-2 lead. Hunter Renfoe added a solo homer against Dominic Leone in the ninth as the Sox suffered their sixth consecutive loss.

That streak came to an end with a 2-1 victory in Game 2 in front of 10,412. Erick Fedde had his best start of the season, allowing three hits with five strikeouts and three walks in 5 2/3 scoreless innings.

“Obviously everybody knows how things are going, it’s been tough,” Fedde said. “Anything can start right now. It’s a good one to build off of and happy for the boys and big win.”

Sox reliever Deivi García allowed one hit in two scoreless innings for his second career save.

The Sox are 3-15 after splitting the doubleheader, which is tied with the 1948 team for the worst 18-game start in franchise history.

The Sox received strong pitching throughout Wednesday, beginning with Cannon. The right-hander struck out three and walked one in a 79-pitch outing.

“He’s got really good movement,” manager Pedro Grifol said. “He’s got weapons and he comes right at you, he’s really aggressive. He’s got good mound presence.”

Photos: Kansas City Royals 4, Chicago White Sox 2

Cannon found out Friday that he would be headed to the majors.

“Super exciting to hear that and have your name called, and I was stoked to get my family up here and share that moment with me,” Cannon said.

The 23-year-old joined the Sox after two starts for Triple-A Charlotte, with whom he had a 2.79 ERA and 11 strikeouts.

The No. 11 prospect in the organization, according to, Cannon originally was slated to start Tuesday but had to wait a day after rain led to a postponement.

“You can’t control the weather,” Cannon said. “But I was happy that we got to play this afternoon. It looked like it might rain this afternoon, but shoot, just go out there and compete. I had a fun time doing it.”

Cannon and Monday’s starter Nick Nastrini became the third pair of Sox pitchers to make their major-league debuts in back-to-back games, following Charlie Biggs and Fabian Kowalik on Sept. 3-4, 1932, and Roy Patterson and John Skopek on April 24-25, 1901, according to Elias.

Nastrini retired the first 11 batters he faced in a 2-0 loss. Cannon retired the first five and had his first strikeout, fanning Perez in the second inning.

Cannon should have had two 1-2-3 innings to begin the game, but center fielder Dominic Fletcher slipped while trying to track down Nelson Velázquez’s liner with two outs in the second, resulting in a double. Adam Frazier followed with an RBI single.

Paul DeJong, who had five hits in the two games, gave the Sox a 2-1 lead with a two-run homer in the second.

It remained that way until two outs in the eighth, when Perez hit a two-run homer on a first-pitch fastball from Kopech. Renfoe extended the lead with a solo homer against Leone one inning later.

The Sox got just enough offense in Game 2. Fletcher had an RBI single in the fourth and Gavin Sheets led off the sixth with a homer, his third.

That helped Fedde earn his first major-league win since Sept. 17, 2022, when he pitched for the Washington Nationals against the Miami Marlins. Fedde spent last season in the Korea Baseball Organization.

“I felt like I was able to especially get leadoff guys out, control counts,” Fedde said. “Had a few walks but picked my places with it. Got to good situations. Overall, really happy with it.

“A big thing today was my sweeper was much more consistent and it allowed me to backdoor the sinker and also made them have to respect the sinker inside to where I could really get in on people and break some bats and get some weak groundballs.”

While the Sox lost two of three in the series, they were able to get a good look at the potential from Nastrini and Cannon to go along with the positives from Fedde.

“It’s a little bit surreal, it really is,” Cannon said. “It’s kind of cliche to say, but it’s the same game. It’s fun, and I love doing it.

“I love showing up to the field every day. It’s really just that love and passion for the game that’s carried me this far.”