The White Sox started their season on the road, but they'll kick off the new season at home Friday in a game against the Detroit Tigers.
The Sox come into Friday's game on a two-game winning streak, something that will be tough to keep up against the hot-swinging bats of the Tigers. But with a dose of steady pitching, healthy bats, and perhaps a little home cooking, the Sox can make the game their fifth consecutive win in a home opener.
"We're sure glad to be going home. It was a long spring training, then two tough series on the road," said Robin Ventura, the White Sox’s new manager. "It has been a long time since we've seen Chicago. It is always fun to go out and get your ovation. Things are always positive, where everybody is eager to get off to a good start."
On Wednesday, the Sox pulled off a tough 10-6 win over the division rival Cleveland Indians in a game that was a lot closer than the final score indicates. But they seemed to be working on all cylinders early as they rocked the Indians’ Justin Masterson for four runs in the first inning.
They ran into problems in the fifth inning when they suddenly found themselves clinging to a slim 5-4 lead. That’s when lefty Alejandro De Aza sent a two-run homer into the stands and A.J. Pierzynski followed suit by driving a pitch into right-field. They never looked back.
"That's the one thing I don't want us to do, to get a few early and then sit on it the rest of the game," Ventura said. "Guys were battling every inning, and you just keep doing that over and over again and you are able to put pressure on them."
During Friday’s match, the runs won’t come as easy as Detroit brings their tough-throwing bullpen.
In their last game, the Tigers knocked off the Tampa Bay Rays 7-2. They were lead by Brennan Boesch drove in four runs Thursday afternoon. Detroit comes into the game batting .304.
Jake Peavy is the game’s projected starter for the Sox as he hopes to pick up his first win. He comes into the game with a 4.50 ERA on the season and is 2-2 with a 3.77 ERA in five career starts against the Tigers.
The Tigers starter, right-hander Max Scherzer, who has been out with illness since he gave up eight hits and seven runs in just 2 2/3 innings, pitched in his season debut against the Red Sox on Sunday.
He sports a 1-2 career record against the White Sox with a 2.95 ERA.