The Chicago White Sox try to bring an end to a three-game slide this afternoon as they matchup against the Detroit Tigers in the second of a three-game set at Comerica Park.
Chicago appeared to be moving towards a much-needed victory on Friday, but the team surrendered a pair of runs in the bottom of the ninth inning which led to a 5-4 setback in the series opener. The Sox, who have now dropped eight of their last 10 outings, are two games below .500 and three games off the pace in the American League Central.
Jhonny Peralta brought home the win for the hosts as he smacked a game-winning two-run home run for a Tigers team which is now an even 8-8 at home and in second place in the division behind Cleveland. Alex Avila added a home run of his own as he notched three hits and scored a pair of runs for Detroit in their second win in the last three games.
Reliever Jose Valverde was credited with the win for the Tigers, throwing a scoreless ninth, while starter Drew Smyly permitted two runs on seven hits and struck out seven through six innings of work.
Chicago starter Jake Peavy appeared to be in line for the win as he gave up three runs on seven hits and fanned six in 7 2/3 innings, but not only did Matt Thornton blow the save he also was charged with the loss.
Gordon Beckham connected on a two-run home run for the visitors in the top of the seventh inning and also notched an RBI double in the third as he finished with three hits. Paul Konerko contributed a pair of hits and worked the only walk of the game for Chicago batters.
Getting his second look at the Tigers in less than a month is Chicago right- hander Gavin Floyd. The former first-round draft pick of the Philadelphia Phillies picked up a win against Detroit back on April 14 when he gave up just three hits and three walks, while striking out six, over the course of six shutout innings in a 5-1 victory at home.
More recently Floyd, who has a career mark of 7-2 with a 3.48 ERA versus the Tigers, went up against Boston last weekend and logged his second win in five decisions. The Maryland native allowed one run on three hits and fanned nine over 6 2/3 innings of work in order to register the 60th win of his career.
As for the Tigers, they are pinning their hopes to Max Scherzer even as he struggles to lower his lofty 7.77 ERA. The Missouri product was beaten up by Boston back on April 8, allowing seven runs in just 2 2/3 innings and since then he's been fighting his way back to respectability.
Last weekend Scherzer made it through just 4 2/3 innings versus the Yankees, permitting three runs on seven hits and an unsightly seven bases-on-balls in what would become a 6-2 road loss for the club. Scherzer, who has a career mark of 3-4 with a 2.51 ERA versus Chicago, has an ERA of 14.09 at home so far this season.
Adam Dunn, who leads Chicago with seven home runs, has picked up the pace a bit in the last five game for the Sox with three home runs and six RBI, but still he is hitting just .239 on the campaign overall. As a group, Chicago is batting only .245 through 26 games.
Miguel Cabrera has been carrying much of the load for the Tigers thus far, leading the squad in hitting (.302), home runs (seven), RBI (22) and total hits (29), having notched at least a pair of hits in five of the last 10 outings.
The season series is now tied at two games apiece which is a positive sign for the White Sox considering they won just five of the 18 matchups all of last year.