White Sox begin seven-game, two-city road trip against division rival Minnesota Twins on Thursday. The Twins are in first place in AL Central division.
The Chicago White Sox are coming off a depressing homestand in which they lost five consecutive games. After snapping their losing streak with a 2-1 win over the Tampa Bay Rays on Wednesday, the team will begin a seven-game road trip on Thursday.
Waiting to face the Sox on Thursday is the Minnesota Twins. The Sox will face a team that is not only tied for first place in the American League Central division but a squad that took two out of three games from the defending World Series champion Houston Astros.
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Starting for the Sox in their series opener against Minnesota will be Lucas Giolito. Minnesota will start Jose Berrios on Thursday. For Giolito, he will look to get his first win of the season against the Twins. Giolito is coming off a start where he wasn’t consistent on the mound and pitched just 5.2 innings against the Detroit Tigers.
The Sox will need a solid performance from Giolito as they will face Minnesota’s best starting pitcher in Berrios. This season, Berrios is 1-1 with a 3.29 ERA, 13 strikeouts, and a 0.73 WHIP. Berrios is 3-1 with a 2.13 in four career starts against the Sox. Last season, Berrios finished the year with a 14-8 record and a 3.89 ERA in 145.1 innings pitched for the Twins.
In Friday’s matchup, the So will start Reynaldo Lopez. Lopez has been solid through his first two starts of this season. However, Lopez has yet to record a win in 2018. He’s 0-1 with a 0.69 ERA and 11 strikeouts. Lopez had a solid outing in his last start this past Sunday against the Tigers. In that outing, Lopez pitched seven innings and recorded five strikeouts while allowing no earned runs.
The Sox will conclude their four-game series against Minnesota with Miguel Gonzalez starting on Saturday and Carson Fulmer starting on Sunday. These two starters are also looking to record their first victories of this season. Each pitcher will have to hold down a Twins offense that is currently hitting .240 as a team with a total of 14 home runs.
For the Sox on offense, they will look to have better results in this series with runners in scoring position. Although the team is hitting .245 collectively, they struggled often in their homestand to score when runners were in scoring position. A bright spot for the Sox on offense, however, has been Tim Anderson. The third-year MLB shortstop currently has six stolen bases for the Sox. If he can get on base often in this series, he will give the Sox more chances to score runs.