Chicago (40-47) at Baltimore (38-51)

Partly Cloudy Currently: Baltimore, MD
Temp: 66° F
  • Game info: 7:05 pm EDT Fri Jul 13, 2007
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Ozzie Guillen expects the Chicago White Sox to undergo a roster shake up if they don’t play well during their 11-game road trip. Their recent play, however, has shown that major changes may not be necessary.

The White Sox look to match a season high with their fourth straight win Friday night when they continue a four-game series against the Baltimore Orioles.

With the White Sox eight games under .500 at the start of the second half, Guillen said Thursday that he expects his team to have a very different look if it doesn’t play well in its next three series at Baltimore, Cleveland and Boston.

“If we don’t start playing the way we should be playing, there is going to be a lot of moves,” Guillen said. “I don’t know how much or how many guys, but that’s the way it should be.”

Guillen’s team, though, has played much better lately, reaching the All-Star break with 10 wins in 15 games.

The White Sox (40-47) started the second half quickly, scoring four times in the first inning Thursday en route to a 9-7 victory.

Jermaine Dye homered and had a season-high three hits, and Rob Mackowiak went 3-for-3 with two RBIs as the White Sox improved to 11-5 since they dropped a season-high 13 games under .500 on June 24.

“I think everybody came back ready to get off to a good start and have a good road trip,” Dye said

The Orioles (38-50) scored five times in the bottom of the ninth to make it close, but Bobby Jenks entered and needed only one pitch to get pinch-hitter Jay Payton to ground out to end the game.

“We kept battling. It turned out to be an exciting game; we got the tying run to the plate,” said Baltimore’s Kevin Millar, who hit a three-run homer in the ninth. “We kept getting good at-bats in the ninth inning. That’s the sign of a good team.”

Chicago, which has won eight of its last nine at Camden Yards, will have ace Mark Buehrle (6-4, 3.06 ERA) on the mound as it tries to win four straight for the fourth time this season.

This will be the first start for Buehrle since he signed a four-year, $56 million contract on Sunday, ending weeks of trade speculation. A three-time All-Star, Buehrle could have been a free agent after this season and surely would have been one of the most sought after players on the market.

The left-hander has won four of his last five decisions, and has pitched at least seven innings in six consecutive starts. Buehrle allowed six hits over eight scoreless innings Saturday in a 3-1 victory over Minnesota.

He gave up four runs—two earned—and nine hits in 7 2-3 innings against the Orioles on July 2, but was denied a win when the bullpen surrendered five runs in the final two innings.

Buehrle is 4-1 with a 2.52 ERA in eight career starts against Baltimore.

The Orioles have lost four of five, and are 9-10 under interim manager Dave Trembley. Baltimore is 19-22 at home, tied with Tampa Bay and the White Sox for the fewest home wins in the AL.

Baltimore counters with ace Erik Bedard (7-4, 3.40), who is coming off the best performance of his career. The left-hander tossed a two-hitter with a franchise record-tying 15 strikeouts Saturday in a 3-0 victory at Texas. Bedard, who faced the minimum 27 batters, recorded the most strikeouts by an AL pitcher this season in his first career shutout.

The major league leader with 149 strikeouts, Bedard is only 2-3 in eight home starts despite a 2.54 ERA.

He had one of his worst outings of the season against the White Sox on July 2, yielding six runs and five hits in 5 2-3 innings. Bedard is 2-2 with a 4.70 ERA in six career starts against them.

Chicago’s Toby Hall is batting .440 (11-for-25) against Bedard.

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Starting Pitchers

M. Buehrle Tor vs. E. Bedard TB
10-9 Record 13-5
3.63 ERA 3.16
115 K 221
45 BB 57
1.26 WHIP 1.09


Friday, Jul 13