Boston Red Sox at Chicago White Sox
When: 8:10 PM ET, Friday, May 3, 2019
Where: Guaranteed Rate Field, Chicago, Illinois
Preview for Digital Sports Desk by Gracenote
CHICAGO – Boston’s Chris Sale is as perplexed as anyone after going winless in six starts, but perhaps a return to his old haunts will make things right when the Boston Red Sox visit the Chicago White Sox tonight for the second contest of their four-game series. Sale, who spent his first seven seasons with the White Sox, entered 2019 with a 19-7 record and 2.82 ERA in March/April but has shown only glimpses of that form this season.
“I keep saying the same things over and over, but it’s a step in the right direction – I know nobody wants to hear that,” Sale told reporters after pitching a season-high seven innings in a loss to Tampa Bay on Sunday. “I’d love to be sitting up here talking about wins and all of that, but at the end of the day, you’ve got to do what you’ve got to do, and I’m grinding. I’m trying to find a way.” Chicago, which sends Reynaldo Lopez to the mound on Friday, prevailed 6-4 in the series opener on Nicky Delmonico’s three-run homer, giving the team its second straight walk-off victory. James McCann has been on a tear for the White Sox of late, hitting .467 with two home runs, six RBIs and seven runs in his last seven games after going 2-for-3 with a two-run blast on Thursday. Andrew Benintendi, Mookie Betts and J.D. Martinez combined to go 8-for-13 at the top of the Boston order in the series opener, but the rest of the lineup went 0-for-20 as the defending World Series champion Red Sox (14-18) continue to spin their wheels.
TV: 8:10 p.m. ET, NESN (Boston), NBCS Chicago
PITCHING MATCHUP: Red Sox LH Chris Sale (0-5, 6.30 ERA) vs. White Sox RH Reynaldo Lopez (2-3, 6.03)
Sale has recorded 1,821 career strikeouts in 1,512 1/3 innings – including 32 in 30 frames this season, with 18 of them coming over 12 innings in his last two starts. The 30-year-old Floridian, who signed a five-year, $145 million extension in March that will keep him under contract through 2024, has increased his pitch count from 93 to 97 to 111 in his last three turns. The American League Player of the Month for March/April, Tim Anderson is 2-for-7 with three strikeouts against Sale, who is 1-1 with a 2.45 ERA in two starts against Chicago and 43-24 with a 3.06 mark in 118 career games (77 starts) at U.S. Cellular Field.
Lopez registered a career-high 14 strikeouts and allowed an unearned run, two hits and three walks in six innings of a 4-1 victory over Detroit on Sunday. The 25-year-old Dominican has gone 2-1 with a 1.50 ERA and 27 strikeouts over 18 frames in his last three starts after entering the stretch with a 12.15 ERA. Lopez won his only career turn against Boston, yielding two runs – one earned – and six hits with three walks and six strikeouts in 6 1/3 innings of a 5-2 victory at Fenway Park on June 10, 2018.
- The White Sox have lost nine of their last 14 overall meetings with the Red Sox and 10 of 16 at home.
- Boston 3B Rafael Devers (.294) extended his career-high on-base streak to 16 games with a walk on Thursday and is batting .346 during that span. Devers went 0-for-3 with two RBIs and committed his ninth error of the season – most among third basemen – two batters before Delmonico ended the game.
- Chicago 1B Jose Abreu (.284) went 0-for-3 with a walk on Thursday, halting a 10-game hitting streak during which he went 21-for-44.