Chicago White Sox Morning BP: Road blues, avoiding a Tampa Bay sweep
Just as soon as the Chicago White Sox seem to be back on track with a three-game sweep earlier this week against the Houston Astros, they come back on the road and lose two in a row to the Tampa Bay Rays.
The White Sox are in the middle of a five-game road slate where they have one game left against the Rays Sunday, and two more on Monday and Tuesday at PNC Park against the Pittsburgh Pirates.
This season the White Sox aren’t very good away from U.S. Cellular Field with a road record of 12-20, and entering Sunday’s game at Tropicana Field the “Good Guys” have been outscored, 169-123 on the road.
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Last season, the White Sox had a .407 winning percentage on the road at 33-48, and the season before (2013) the road record was even worse at 26-55. In ’12 (Robin Ventura‘s first season as the White Sox skipper) their road mark was 40-41.
Before Sunday’s game the White Sox have a road winning percentage of .375.
Also this month the White Sox are 5-6 in road games, being outscored 51-41. A win on Sunday with Chris Sale on the mound would put them at .500 for the month which in itself is something to build on, right?
Apr 30, 2015; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Chicago White Sox starting pitcher Chris Sale (49) pitches in the third inning against the Minnesota Twins at Target Field. Mandatory Credit: Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports
Sunday should be a different type of day on the road for the White Sox with Sale having his scheduled start. Sale in his past three starts has pitched no less than seven inning each outing, including his June 8 start against the Astros where he allowed one earned run in eight innings.
What has been amazing about Sale is in his aforementioned three starts he’s struck out a total of 39 batters, including 14 on June 8. His June 3 and May 28 starts at the Texas Rangers and Baltimore Orioles saw the ace of the White Sox strike out 13 and 12 batters, with just two walks and a combined no earned runs allowed.
Sale has five road starts this season, with a 3.41 ERA and 46 strikeouts.
This game is important for the White Sox as they enter it 28-32, four-games under the .500 mark, last in the AL Central. The White Sox are 6.5 games back of the Royals in the division race, and a half game back of the Cleveland Indians for fourth.
The White Sox headlines:
• Adam Eaton makes impact off bench in Saturday’s loss: By Dan Hayes of CSNChicago.com
• Abreu homers again but White Sox lose 7-5 to Rays: By Mark Didtler of DailyHerald.com
• White Sox rally, but bullpen falters vs. Rays: By Scott Merkin and Troy Provost-Heron of MLB.com.
• White Sox Sign 26 Draft Picks, Including 14 of Top 15: By CBS Local Chicago
• Adam Eaton gets day off — and he’s not happy about it: By Daryl Van Schouwen of Sun-Times.com.