John Danks needed 13 starts to get his second win last season. Tonight, he tries to hit that number in his third appearance of the season when the Chicago White Sox play host to the Baltimore Orioles in the second test of a four-game set at U.S. Cellular Field.
Danks, who lost his first eight decisions a year ago, picked up his first win of the season in Cleveland on Wednesday when he allowed four runs and seven hits in 5 2/3 innings to even his ledger at 1-1 to go along with a 5.40 ERA.
"I'm happy to get a win in April instead of June," said Danks, who also walked five batters in the win. "The walks certainly didn't help, and the Indians hit my mistakes hard. I was fortunate to have the run support I had, and [I] just tried to get out of the way and let these guys get back in the dugout."
Danks is 4-3 lifetime versus the Orioles with a 4.31 ERA in nine starts.
Heading to the hill for the Orioles this evening will be Taiwanese lefty Wei- Yin Chen, who did not get a decision in his first start on Tuesday versus the New York Yankees. After serving up a leadoff home run to Derek Jeter, Chen settled down and gave up four runs (two earned) on seven hits in 5 2/3 innings. He also struck out six and walked just one, while keeping the Yankees off balance with a mix of offspeed pitches.
"His changeup was a good pitch tonight," Orioles manager Buck Showalter said. "Once he got the ball down, he made some quality pitches. He'll get people out in America, Japan or Taiwan. He's got a good arm."
Chen will be trying to keep Baltimore in the win column after Nolan Reimold and Adam Jones each belted solo home runs in the top of the ninth to send the game to extra innings before the Orioles posted six runs in the 10th to take a 10-4 victory on Monday.
Matt Wieters added a solo shot in the seventh en route to five RBI and Chris Davis added three hits for the Orioles, who have won three of their last four games.
Pedro Strop (1-0) was the beneficiary of the 10th inning outburst, while starter Jake Arrieta allowed four runs -- two earned -- on seven hits with seven strikeouts over 6 2/3 innings.
"I felt good. I was really able to locate my sinker away from right-handed hitters," said Arrieta, who tossed a career-high 114 pitches. "My arm feels great and I was able to control my off-speed pitches as well. I pounded the zone and was very aggressive."
A.J. Pierzynksi finished 3-for-3 with a homer and Paul Konerko knocked in two runs. Chicago has now dropped two straight on the heels of a four-game win streak.
Baltimore split its eight games with the White Sox last season, but was 3-1 in the Windy City.