|5:10 PM PT6:10 PM MT7:10 PM CT8:10 PM ET20:10 ET0:10 GMT8:10 5:10 PM MST7:10 PM EST7:40 PM VEN4:10 UAE (+1)7:10 PM CT, May 23, 2019
Minute Maid Park, Houston, Texas Attendance: 26,073
White Sox turn to Giolito for chance to split with Astros
Chicago White Sox at Houston Astros
- The White Sox have a 5.96 ERA at Guaranteed Rate Field but a 4.01 ERA on the road. That 1.95 difference is the second largest in MLB (road better) behind only the Rockies (2.70 difference).
- The Astros lost to the Red Sox on Sunday, snapping what was already their second 10-game winning streak this season. They are the first team to have multiple 10+ game winning streaks before June 1st since the 1955 Dodgers, who won the World Series that season.
- The Astros swept the season series against the White Sox last season, scoring 56 runs while holding the White Sox to 16 runs. Houston's starters posted a 2.22 ERA against Chicago last season, while Chicago's starters had an 8.00 ERA.
- Tim Anderson collected three hits in the seventh spot of the lineup on Sunday -- he is hitting .422 in that lineup position, best among all players with at least 10 games in the seventh spot.
- George Springer has 17 home runs this season -- the most home runs by an Astro before June 1 is Jeff Bagwell with 18 in 1996. All of his home runs have come in the leadoff spot -- the only players in the last 100 years with as many home runs in the leadoff spot before June 1 are Mookie Betts in 2018 (17) and Brady Anderson in 1996 (20).
- The White Sox are 15-0 when allowing three or fewer runs this season, the only team left in MLB that is undefeated in such games. However, they are 1-19 when scoring three or fewer runs, second worst behind the Rangers (0-11).
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The sting of being on the receiving end of a vintage Justin Verlander performance didn't linger for the more youthful members of the Chicago White Sox, who on Wednesday displayed the resiliency that will serve them well as the plate appearances accumulate during their rookie campaigns.
One night after finishing a combined 0-for-6 with four strikeouts, rookie outfielders Eloy Jimenez and Charlie Tilson went 3-for-8 with three homers, four runs and six RBIs in a 9-4 win over the host Houston Astros. That result gives the White Sox a chance to earn a series split with a win Thursday in the finale of a four-game series.
Jimenez flashed the potential of a top prospect, slugging two mammoth home runs that covered 846 feet with exit velocities of 106.2 and 109.9 mph. His first homer, off Astros right-hander Gerrit Cole, carried to center field. His second, and fifth of the season, went the opposite way to right-center off Brady Rodgers, giving Jimenez his second multi-homer game.
Tilson, meanwhile, broke open a tight contest with his first career homer: a grand slam off flame-throwing right-hander Josh James with two outs in the sixth inning. Tilson left no doubt with his 404-foot shot to right, providing the White Sox a glimpse of their youngsters' future.
"It's a big pick-me-up," White Sox manager Rick Renteria said. "Basically what it does is it reaffirms what they're capable of doing. This is a very good club on the other side, and they've got some good chuckers. We were fortunate."
Right-hander Lucas Giolito (5-1, 3.35 ERA) gets the mound assignment Thursday for the White Sox. He is 3-0 with a 0.93 ERA over his previous three starts, earning his team-leading fifth victory on Saturday after allowing one run on three hits over five innings in a 4-1 win against the Toronto Blue Jays.
Giolito has a career-high four-game winning streak. He is 0-3 with a 7.31 ERA over three career starts against the Astros, with an 0-2 mark and a 2.57 ERA in Houston.
Rookie right-hander Corbin Martin (1-0, 3.86 ERA) will pitch the series finale for the Astros. He allowed three runs (two earned) on five hits and four walks over four innings in his second career start on Saturday at Boston. He did not factor into the decision as the Astros won 7-3.
Martin was victorious in his debut on May 12, recording nine strikeouts over 5 1/3 innings against the Texas Rangers.
Cole's rough outing on Wednesday brought a bit of concern: his four-seam fastball velocity was down.
Cole, who leads the majors with 100 strikeouts in 65 2/3 innings, entered averaging 97.4 mph with his fastball in his 10 starts this season. That velocity was down to 94.7 on 55 four-seamers against Chicago, with Cole finally touching 98.8 as things unraveled in the sixth.
Cole is vital to the Astros' championship hopes, and in the aftermath of his performance, he described his showing as just a rough night on the mound and nothing more foreboding.
"I was just off," Cole said. "It wasn't a good night. I wasn't synced up enough in my delivery. I was off a little bit in my conviction and some of the pitches I was throwing. I was able to navigate pretty good through the first five. It just spiraled out in the sixth."
--Field Level Media
Updated May 23, 2019