The Los Angeles Angels are in town to kick off a three-game series Friday night against the White Sox. Defending strikeout king Jered Weaver (3-0, 0.87 ERA) takes the hill for the Halos against Phil Humber (1-0, 3.38) in the series opener.
Saturday – Tyler Chatwood (0-1, 7.20 ERA) vs. Gavin Floyd (1-0, 2.40)
Sunday – Dan Haren (3-0, 0.73) vs. Mark Buehrle (1-0, 4.26)
The Angels have the clear pitching advantage in two of the three games. Weaver has struck out 27 batters in 20 2/3 innings in 2011 and Dan Haren has surrendered just 11 hits and two runs in 24 2/3 innings pitched. Humber, Floyd and Buehrle all looked much better in their previous starts, but they’re going to need help from the offense in order to take this series.
Will the bullpen finally settle down and start getting outs consistently?
Your guess is as good as mine. Since most White Sox fans would currently jump on the pessimistic side of the fence, I’m going to remain optimistic that things have hit rock bottom and it won’t get any worse.
Nine of the Angels’ 12 games have been decided by two runs or less, and the largest margin they’ve seen thusfar is a four-run win. The Angels keep it close and the White Sox are going to need the bullpen to come through and retain a slim lead or keep the game close while the offense tries to plate a few more runs.
With a day off Thursday, the White Sox will have the means to fire on all cylinders this weekend. Taking two of three would be a great step in the right direction.