After missing an opportunity to gain ground in the AL Central race, the Chicago White Sox will turn to a well-rested Edwin Jackson(notes) to get them back on track Thursday night against the Baltimore Orioles.
After recording double-digit hits in 10 consecutive games, the White Sox (68-58) produced five in a 4-2 loss to the Orioles on Wednesday. They remained 3 1/2 games behind first-place Minnesota.
Having lost 11 of 16, Chicago hopes Jackson (1-0, 1.35 ERA) can help it bounce back by continuing his outstanding start with the team. The right-hander, acquired July 30 from Arizona, threw only seven pitches before Friday night’s game in Kansas City was rained out. He was subsequently scratched from Saturday’s doubleheader.
“He wanted to go, but the smartest thing is not to pitch him,” manager Ozzie Guillen said. “I’d rather lose a game than lose a pitcher. I’m not going to risk a career or a year just cause we want to win a game.”
That should leave Jackson fresh for his fourth official start with Chicago and second in 2 1/2 weeks against Baltimore (45-82).
Jackson gave up two runs over six innings of 3-2, 10-inning loss at Camden Yards on Aug. 9. He has gone 4-0 with a 3.34 ERA in his last five starts against the Orioles.
The White Sox may need Jackson to pitch well, and deep, into Thursday’s contest as they will be missing two key members from a struggling bullpen.
Chicago recalled Lucas Harrell(notes) from Triple-A Charlotte and activated Erick Threets(notes) from the disabled list to fill those spots. Threets has appeared in 19 career games, while Harrell has made one start in the majors.
“Right now, all of our concern is with Thornton and J.J.,” closer Bobby Jenks(notes) told the team’s website. “It comes to a point where your body says, ‘That’s enough.’ Unfortunately, we got to that point with both those guys.”
The Orioles will try to take advantage of the White Sox’s thin bullpen as they look to get back on track. Baltimore won eight of its first nine under Buck Showalter but is 5-8 since.
Showalter’s team took three of four from Chicago from Aug. 6-9.
Jake Arrieta(notes) (4-5, 4.90) has pitched at least six innings in his last four starts, allowing three runs or fewer in three of them. The right-hander suffered defeats in the last two despite a 2.84 ERA, losing 2-0 to Texas on Friday after throwing 6 2-3 innings and giving up one earned run.
“Jake was really good, gave us a really good chance to win,” Showalter told the team’s website. “Some of our young guys seem to be getting stronger, giving us a really good chance to win.”