Boston (54-43) at Chicago (63-33)

Partly Cloudy Currently: Chicago, IL
Temp: 86° F
  • Game info: 3:05 pm EDT Sun Jul 24, 2005
  • TV: NESN, WGN
Preview | Box Score | Recap

As has been his tradition, Manny Ramirez is really heating up in July.

The slugging outfielder will look to continue his recent power surge when the Boston Red Sox try to win their four-game series against the Chicago White Sox.

Ramirez is batting .290 (18-for-62) with eight home runs and 21 RBIs in 19 games this month. A career .302 hitter in July, Ramirez has 83 homers and 242 RBIs in 291 career July games.

Currently leading the majors in RBIs with 89, Ramirez won Thursday’s opener with a solo home run leading off the ninth. He then gave the Red Sox a quick lead with a two-run shot in the first inning of what ended as a 3-0 Boston win on Saturday.

Wade Miller pitched seven sharp innings on Saturday to earn his first win since May 30.

The Red Sox have won eight of their last nine against the White Sox in Chicago, including two of the first three this season in a matchup between the defending World Series champs and the team with the best record in the majors.

The White Sox will be counting on right-hander Jose Contreras to slow down the Red Sox on Sunday. The only problem is, Contreras has struggled mightily against Boston during his career, going 1-4 with a 13.50 ERA in six games, including five starts. He has served up seven homers against the Red Sox in just 21 1-3 innings.

Contreras recently drew the ire of White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen after allowing seven runs and eight hits over 5 2-3 innings in a 7-1 loss to Detroit on Tuesday.

“He has the best arm we have on the mound. He’s not the best pitcher,” Guillen said.

Guillen also said when Contreras is good, he’s very good and when he’s bad, he’s bad.

“There is nothing in between. … When he throws strikes, he’s unhittable. He’s his own worst enemy,” Guillen said.

Chicago, which has lost just eight series all season, has dropped four of its last five games.

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Starting Pitchers

B. Arroyo LAD vs. J. Contreras Tex
14-10 Record 15-7
4.51 ERA 3.61
100 K 154
54 BB 75
1.30 WHIP 1.23