With a season-high 12-game homestand waiting for them in Chicago, the surging White Sox hope to take the finale of their three-game series with the Tampa Bay Devil Rays at Tropicana Field.
Chicago, which has played nine of its first 12 games on the road, rebounded from a 3-0 loss in Friday’s opener by beating Tampa Bay 4-1 on Saturday.
The White Sox have won six of their last eight games, and will be playing their last road game until May 3, when they open a six-game trip at Baltimore.
After averaging nearly seven runs in its first nine games, Chicago went scoreless for the first time this season Friday. It didn’t take the White Sox long to rebound, a trend manager Ozzie Guillen hopes will continue.
”(Friday), the first thing I told them was get ready to start another streak tomorrow,” said Guillen. “When we lose, the point is to come back and play positive.”
Juan Uribe drove in two runs for the White Sox, giving him nine hits in his last 19 at-bats. Chicago slugger Frank Thomas drew three walks, raising his career total to 1,399—five shy of Hank Aaron for 22nd place on the all-time list.
The Devil Rays will look to avoid their first two-game losing streak of the season in their last outing at Tropicana Field before a nine-game trip.
Right-hander Victor Zambrano failed to become the major leagues’ first four-game winner Saturday, allowing three runs and six hits, walking five and hitting two batters in seven innings. He was looking to become the first pitcher since Nolan Ryan in 1975 to win four times in his team’s first 10 games.
Jeremi Gonzalez, who starts for Tampa Bay on Sunday, is still seeking his first victory. The right-hander has lost both his starts this season, and a career-high eight straight decisions dating to August 19.
Gonzalez dyed his hair blond Saturday in hopes of regaining his 2003 form, when he pitched a career-high 156 1-3 innings and was the Devil Rays’ most consistent starter after being called up from Triple-A Durham in mid-May.
“It worked for me before,” Gonzalez said of the dye job.