Toronto (78-67) at Chicago (81-64)

Heavy Thunderstorm Currently: Chicago, IL
Temp: 75° F
  • Game info: 8:11 pm EDT Thu Sep 11, 2008
  • TV: TSN, CLTV
Preview | Box Score | Recap

With just a 1 1/2-game lead in the AL Central, the Chicago White Sox are probably relieved that the Toronto Blue Jays will be leaving town soon.

After finally getting their first victory this season against Toronto, the White Sox look for a split of this four-game set on Thursday.

Chicago (81-64) snapped a three-game losing streak Wednesday, beating the Blue Jays 6-5. Toronto had won the first six games in the season series, including sweeping a doubleheader on Tuesday, while outscoring the White Sox 23-8.

The Blue Jays, who had won 10 straight, sent ace Roy Halladay to the mound on Wednesday, but he gave up five runs over six innings in one of his worst outings of the season.

“It doesn’t matter if you’ve won 10 or lost 10,” Halladay said. “But given how well we’ve been playing, yeah it’s disappointing. But you have to get over it. …”

A.J. Pierzynski doubled and had three RBIs for the White Sox, who failed to homer for a third straight game, matching a season-high drought. Chicago - 9-30 when it fails to homer - leads the majors with 209, but is playing without injured slugger Carlos Quentin, who leads the AL with 36 homers.

“If we don’t have the guys who hit home runs in the lineup, we have to try to do something different,” White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen said.

Chicago leads Minnesota in the AL Central. The White Sox and Twins play a three-game series at the Metrodome Sept. 23-25.

Gavin Floyd (15-6, 3.72 ERA) takes the mound for Chicago in the bid for the split. Floyd has won his last five decisions, and the White Sox have won seven of his last eight starts during that stretch. He pitched seven innings Saturday against the Los Angeles Angels, allowing five runs and seven hits in Chicago’s 7-5, 15-inning win.

The right-hander pitched a perfect inning of relief against the Blue Jays his lone appearance against them in 2007.

Shaun Marcum (8-6, 3.42) counters for the Blue Jays. Marcum pitched seven scoreless innings Saturday against Tampa Bay, allowing four hits while striking out seven before Toronto won 7-4 in 13 innings.

The right-hander is 3-1 with a 2.83 ERA in his last five starts.

Marcum is 2-0 with a 2.04 ERA in three starts against the White Sox. He scattered two hits in 6 2-3 scoreless on May 2 in a 2-0 win.

The White Sox played Wednesday without first baseman Paul Konerko, who hurt his right knee in the second game of Tuesday night’s doubleheader. An MRI exam confirmed it was just a sprain and he will be evaluated daily.

“It’s different if this happened in April or May,” Konerko said. “You might wait until there was no pain. I’ll just wait until I can function and if there is some pain, that’s fine. … We’re fighting here for a spot in the playoffs, but you got to be able to function when you hit.”

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Starting Pitchers

S. Marcum Cle vs. G. Floyd Atl
9-7 Record 17-8
3.39 ERA 3.84
123 K 145
50 BB 70
1.16 WHIP 1.26

Scoreboard

Thursday, Sep 11