Maybe it's just a formality, but after pitching effectively against the Dodgers Monday afternoon, White Sox left-hander John Danks has officially been named the club's Opening-Day starter by rookie manager Robin Ventura.
With Mark Buehrle departing for the free-agent dollars in Miami, Danks might be the White Sox' best starting pitcher. While he went just 8-12 last season and missed a few weeks with a strained oblique muscle, Danks also posted the best strikeout-to-walk ratio (2.93) of his career.
Granted, Gavin Floyd's got a claim on the top spot, too. In fact, Floyd and Danks have essentially been pitching twins over the last four seasons, performance-wise, with Floyd actually holding a slight edge. But for whatever reason, Danks seems to get more love as a potential ace, even though he's never really pitched like an ace for a whole season.
Of course, it really doesn't matter who starts the first game and who starts the second. Both Floyd and Danks would be solid No. 2 or 3 starters on mid-level contending teams, and there's been some talk about one or both getting traded at some point in 2012.