Philadelphia (65-65) at Chicago (63-65)

Partly Cloudy Currently: Chicago, IL
Temp: 86° F
  • Game info: 2:05 pm EDT Mon Aug 30, 2004
  • TV: CSN, WCIU
Preview | Box Score | Recap

Like the rest of the Philadelphia Phillies, Marlon Byrd had high expectations entering this season. It certainly has not worked out as he had hoped.

Byrd and the Phillies will try to move back above .500 for the first time in more than two weeks when they meet the Chicago White Sox in a rescheduled interleague game against the Chicago White Sox.

The Phillies and White Sox split the first two game of their series at U.S. Cellular Field before the finale was rained out on June 10.

Byrd, who batted .303 as a rookie last season, entered the season as the Phillies’ starting center fielder and leadoff batter. But after hitting .224 in the season’s early months, Byrd was demoted to Triple-A Scranton on June 21.

He hasn’t fared any better since his recall on July 31, only raising his average to .231.

Byrd, however, ended a 1-for-23 slump by going 3-for-4 with his second career grand slam to lead the Phillies to a 10-0 rout of the Milwaukee Brewers on Sunday.

“It’s been a long season for me, so that felt great,” said Byrd, who had a career-high five RBIs. “People say I’m slumping, but I’ve had three web gems against me in three different series.”

Cory Lidle threw a four-hitter and homered Sunday, and Byrd, Jimmy Rollins, Bobby Abreu and Placido Polanco each finished with three hits to help the Phillies complete a three-game sweep.

The Phillies are just 6-16 since Aug. 12, and all six wins have been against the Brewers. They have not been above .500 since they were 59-58 on Aug. 14.

Philadelphia is sixth in the NL wild-card race—six games behind the Chicago Cubs and San Diego Padres.

“There’s definitely a chance, but we have to play our best ball the rest of the season,” Lidle said.

The White Sox return home after going 3-4 on a road trip to Detroit and Cleveland. They managed just two hits off Indians starter Scott Elarton in a 9-0 loss on Sunday.

With the loss, Chicago fell onto third place in the AL Central—one game behind Cleveland. The White Sox have lost eight of their last 11.

The White Sox and Phillies will close interleague play for 2004. The AL currently has a 126-125 lead in the season series. The NL has won four of the previous seven season series.

STANDINGS (through Aug. 28): Phillies - 3rd place, 11 1/2 GB, NL East. White Sox - 2nd place (tied), 8 GB, AL Central.

PHILLIES PROBABLE STARTER: Brett Myers (7-9, 5.35 ERA). After allowing six earned runs in each of his previous two starts, Myers was much better on Tuesday. The 24-year-old right-hander allowed two runs and four hits over seven innings, but he did not get a decision in the Phillies’ 4-2 loss to the Houston Astros. Myers has never faced the White Sox.

WHITE SOX PROBABLE STARTER: Mark Buehrle (11-8, 4.02 ERA). Buehrle has struggled since the All-Star break, going 1-5 with a 4.50 ERA over his last six starts. The 25-year-old left-hander gave up three runs and eight hits over six innings Wednesday in a 5-4 loss to the Detroit Tigers. In two career starts against Philadelphia, Buehrle is 2-0 with a 4.11 ERA.

OFFENSIVE LEADERS: Phillies - Abreu, .292 avg., 93 RBIs, 99 runs and 32 SBs; Jim Thome, 38 HRs. White Sox - Aaron Rowand, .318 avg. and 15 SBs; Paul Konerko, 32 HRs and 91 RBIs; Carlos Lee, 78 runs.

INTERLEAGUE RECORDS: Phillies, 9-8; White Sox, 7-10.

STREAKS AND NOTES: Phillies - 1B Thome is batting .222 (4-for-18) with eight strikeouts in his career against LHP Buehrle. … LF Pat Burrell, on the disabled list since Aug. 4 with a strained left wrist, will start a rehabilitation assignment Monday at Double-A Reading. … RHP Ryan Madson, on the DL since July 26 with a sprained right little finger, will throw an inning at Reading on Monday. White Sox - 2B Roberto Alomar, who is hitting just .154 in 52 at-bats since he was acquired from Arizona earlier this month, has sat out the last two games. … 1B Konerko needs one homer to move past Bill Melton into sole possession of sixth place on the club’s all-time list with 154. … The White Sox hit a club-record 11 homers in the first two games of their series against the Phillies. The teams combined for 17 homers in the two games, a record for U.S. Cellular Field.

ROAD/HOME RECORDS: Phillies - 32-32 on the road; White Sox - 34-30 at home.

INJURIES: Phillies - OF Burrell (shoulder), 15-day DL; RHP Madson (finger), 15-day DL; RHP Kevin Millwood (elbow), 15-day DL; RHP Brian Powell (biceps), 15-day DL; LHP Billy Wagner (shoulder), 15-day DL. White Sox - C Sandy Alomar Jr. (groin), 15-day DL; OF Alex Escobar (foot), 15-day DL; OF Magglio Ordonez (knee), 15-day DL; LHP Scott Schoeneweis (elbow), 15-day DL; INF Frank Thomas (foot), 60-day DL.

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Starting Pitchers

B. Myers Cle vs. M. Buehrle Tor
11-11 Record 16-10
5.52 ERA 3.89
116 K 165
62 BB 51
1.47 WHIP 1.26