The Chicago White Sox look at add to their longest winning streak in two years as they host the Seattle Mariners for the second leg of a three-game series at U.S. Cellular Field.
Chicago has won 10 in a row and 11 of their past 12 to take over first place in the American League Central. The White Sox continued their across-the-board success on Friday during their 7-4 win in the opening game of the series. Seattle scored two runs in the seventh and eighth innings to even the score at four before the home team received clutch RBI hits from Alexei Ramirez and Alejandro De Aza.
Jake Peavy (6-1) gave up two earned runs in 6 1/3 innings and Matt Thornton gave up the other two runs in his one inning of action. The White Sox sealed the win with excellent relief work by Jesse Crain and Addison Reed.
Chicago's offense, especially the top of the order, was productive in the opening contest of its nine-game homestand. Gordon Beckham extended his hitting streak to eight games by belting two home runs and Adam Dunn went yard for the 17th time this season.
"We just kind of take it day-by-day and just try to play as good as we can that day," Dunn said about his team's win streak.
As a team, the White Sox are batting .312 with 18 home runs and 17 doubles during their winning streak. Chicago's offense will need to stay hot to help out its right-hander Gavin Floyd in this one.
Floyd showed mild improvement his last time out as he picked up a win after going five innings and surrendering five earned runs and 10 hits. Floyd has given up four home runs, 28 hits, and has a 12.89 ERA over his last three starts.
Seattle will counter Floyd with Hector Noesi. The righty has been solid as of late. Noesi posted back-to-back eight-inning outings and only gave up three runs each time, but he lost both events due to a lack of run support. His ERA for the month of May was 3.22.
However, Noesi gave up six runs in 1 1/3 innings on April 20 in his first clash with the White Sox. He has not recorded a victory in five decisions. Dunn homered off of Noesi last season when the pitcher was a reliever for the Yankees.
The Mariners' late rally showed they will not be a cakewalk for Robin Ventura's club in this series. Kyle Seager provided a spark with a two-run shot and also drove in a third run. Justin Smoak went 2-of-3 with an RBI and walk in the losing effort. Ichiro Suzuki went 1-for-5 and scored a run in his return to the leadoff spot. The All-Star outfielder had batted in the No. 3 position for the past 52 games.
Smoak has gone 6-of-11 with two home runs, seven RBI, five runs scored, and four walks in his last three games.
"It was good for us to get a couple of runs there, battle back and give ourselves a chance," Seager said about the eighth inning.
Seattle will look to carry that momentum into Saturday against a team that has had its number in recent history.
The White Sox swept a three-game series in Seattle from April 20-22 this season and are 20-3 in the past 23 matchups between the teams. Seattle is 2-15 at U.S. Celluar Field since 2008.