It’s been a bad month for the Chicago White Sox.
The White Sox will try and get back on the winning track as they begin a three-game set with the Detroit Tigers.
Chicago was in first place in the American League Central on July 25, then the bottom fell out with losses in 19 of their next 27 games. The White Sox find themselves trailing the Minnesota Twins by nine games and Boston by 9 1/2 for the wild card.
Chicago, which heads to Detroit having been swept by the Red Sox, has dropped four straight. With Sunday’s 6-5 loss, the White Sox have fallen under .500 for the first time since April 8.
Freddy Garcia and Damaso Marte gave up home runs on back-to-back pitches to lead off the eighth inning. Chicago was swept by Boston in three games for the first time since losing three straight Sept. 26-28, 2000, in Chicago.
About the only bright spot for the White Sox over the last month has been the play of pitcher Jose Contreras.
He has been brilliant since the White Sox acquired him from the New York Yankees on July 31 in exchange for right-hander Esteban Loaiza. Contreras is 3-0 with 26 strikeouts and a 3.04 ERA in four starts with his new team.
The hard-throwing right-hander has already set a career-high with 11 wins this season to go with his 5.08 ERA.
Contreras held Detroit to two runs and six hits in just under seven innings to earn a 9-2 win over the Tigers in his last start on Wednesday.
“We haven’t done all that well against him,” Detroit manager Alan Trammell said. “He’s not afraid if he falls behind to throw the heat.”
Contreras is 3-0 with a 1.71 ERA in four starts against the Tigers in his career.
Detroit had won three straight before suffering a 5-3 loss to the Seattle Mariners on Sunday.
Catcher Ivan Rodriguez lined out with runners on first and second and two outs in to end the game.
Rodriguez was given the day off after going 4-for-5 with an RBI on Saturday. He leads all catchers and ranks third in the AL with his .340 batting average.