So far the homestand has been successful. There have been a couple of tweaks with the rotation. And the rotation stuff is starting to make people nervous. Tonight, the Sox will look to keep the success going. This time against a team that hasn’t exactly been easy to get through.
Robin is sending out the following guys to make it two in a row:
Jordan Danks CF, Youk 3B, Big Donkey DH, The King 1B, Alex Rios RF, AJ Pierzynski C, The Cuban Missile SS, The Cuban Tank LF, Bacon 2B.
Chris Sale will start for the Sox tonight. Chris is coming off of a nine-day rest period. Hopefully the rest will do him good. In his last start, Chris’s velocity was WAY down. In fact, he did not reach 90 until the fifth inning in his last start. He also allowed five runs in 6.1 innings worth of work. The runs tied a career high. He also gave up six hits in that outing. Though the Sox did go on to win that game, it definitely didn’t leave fans feeling good about Chris. Tonight, fans will see if the extra rest is just what was needed to get him back on track.
In his career against the Royals, Chris is 2-3 with a 3.96 ERA in 13 games, two of which were starts. The last time he faced them was after the All-Star break where he pitched eight innings of work allowing just one run on 10 hits. The last time he faced the Royals at home, he lost after allowing three runs in five innings.
While Chris has generally been pretty tough on hitters, there are a couple Royals who have hit him pretty well. Chris Getz is batting .600 in five at-bats against Sale. Alex Gordon is also hitting .600 off of Sale. Billy Butler is hitting just .250 off of Sale, but he has taken Sale out of the park.
Ned Yost will send out the following guys to be spoilers:
Alex Gordon LF, Alcides Escobar SS, Lorenzo Cain CF, Billy Butler DH, Salvador Perez C, Frenchy RF, Eric Hosmer 1B, Tony Abreu 3B, Chris Getz 2B.
Luis Mendoza will start for the Royals tonight. The Sox have seen Mendoza before and it was another one of those “seriously”? kind of moments. In his career, Mendoza has seen the Sox six times, four of which were starts. His last start was three weeks ago against the Sox and he allowed two runs in the first two innings. Then he went on to shut the Sox down until he left the game. The Sox did win the game, but fact that he was able to shut them down is kind of embarrassing. Overall, Luis has compiled a 3-2 record with a 4.26 ERA against the Sox.
Of current Sox hitters, AJ Pierzynski is the only one who has taken Mendoza out of the park. Kevin Youkilis has also hit him pretty well as well. Adam Dunn and Paul Konerko have both drawn the collar against Mendoza.
*Notes: The Sox are the only team that has four players in the top 25 when it comes to RISP average. Alex Rios is third, Alexei Ramirez is ninth, AJ Pierzynski is 12th and Paul Konerko is 21st. Alejandro De Aza was a late scratch from today’s lineup.
John Danks underwent successful arthroscopic shoulder surgery today. He is expected to be ready for Spring 2012. Philip Humber has been sent to the bullpen for now. How long he will be there will depend on the other starters the team has.
Yesterday’s win for the Royals was the team’s 15th comeback victory this season and fifth done in walk off fashion. Yunieksy Betancourt was designated for assignment and Tony Abreu was recalled from Omaha.