After a successful road trip, things are again falling apart for the Chicago White Sox.
The White Sox look to avoid losing their first series to the Baltimore Orioles at U.S. Cellular Field in six years as they conclude their four-game set on Thursday.
Chicago (36-45) won six of seven games on its latest road trip, only to return home and lose two of the first three games on its seven-game homestand leading into the All-Star break.
The White Sox lost to Baltimore 9-6 on Wednesday, and have dropped 14 of their last 19 home games. Chicago has won 15 of its last 24 home games over the Orioles, and has not lost a series at U.S. Cellular Field to them since June 29-July 1, 2001.
Baltimore leadoff hitter Brian Roberts went 3-for-5 with two runs on Wednesday, and is batting .419 (26-for-62) with three homers, eight RBIs and 11 runs in his last 15 games.
Kevin Millar had two doubles and two RBIs on Wednesday to match a season-high nine-game hitting streak. He’s hitting .485 (16-for-33) with eight RBIs during his run, raising his batting average 37 points to .284.
Rookie Brian Burres (4-2, 3.38 ERA) looks to build off his last start when he takes the mound for the Orioles. Burres, who started the season as a reliever, gave up three runs and five hits in a career-high 7 2-3 innings of a 6-3 victory over the Los Angeles Angels on Saturday, his first win since May 31.
“I feel a lot better than I did my first start as far as my whole routine and just going out there and knowing what I’ve got to do, the whole feel of starting the game,” the left-hander said.
Burres is 2-1 with a 3.60 ERA in five road starts, allowing two runs or less in four of them.
This will be his first career start against the White Sox.
Chicago counters with fellow rookie John Danks (4-6, 4.43), who is coming off the best start of his brief career, but still did not get the win.
After allowing four runs in five innings in a victory over Tampa Bay on June 25, Danks limited Kansas City to one run and four hits while striking out six in a career-high eight innings before the White Sox won 3-1 in 10 innings.
“It all evens out,” the 22-year-old left-hander said. “I’m not upset.”
“I feel like I backed into my last one. I didn’t pitch well and I happened to get (the win). I’m not worried about my personal win-loss record.”
Danks has not come away with many victories lately, going just 1-2 with a 5.30 ERA in his last seven starts.
This will be his first career start against the Orioles.
Third baseman Josh Fields hit his fourth homer on Wednesday, and is 6-for-15 with two home runs and four RBIs in four games this month.