The White Sox kick off their second half by running straight into Justin Verlander, and it serves them right. When you fail to feast on the Rodrigo Lopezes of the world, you deserve to face the Cy Young front-runner immediately after the break.
Verlander is 12-4 with a 2.15 ERA, and he leads the league in innings (151), strikeouts (147) and WHIP (0.874). He'll have a chance to pad his numbers against a team he's owned over the last two years.
In his last seven starts against the White Sox, he's 7-0 with a 2.06 ERA and an average of eight innings per start.
|1||2011-06-04||W 4-2||GS-8 ,W||8.0||7||2||2||1||7||1||112||66|
|2||2011-04-22||W 9-3||GS-7 ,W||7.0||4||3||3||0||8||3||117||65|
|3||2010-09-18||W 6-3||CG 9 ,W||9.0||6||3||3||1||8||0||123||70|
|4||2010-09-07||W 9-1||GS-7 ,W||7.0||5||1||1||1||7||0||121||69|
|5||2009-10-04||W 5-3||GS-8 ,W||7.2||6||3||3||2||5||0||120||58|
|6||2009-07-24 (1)||W 5-1||CG 9 ,W||9.0||6||1||0||4||4||0||127||73|
|7||2009-06-10||W 2-1||CG 9 ,W||9.0||6||1||1||1||9||1||122||79|
The White Sox were 90 feet away from stopping his win streak back on June 4. They had a runner on third with one out in the eighth inning, but Verlander threw two hellacious 100-mph fastballs on each corner to get Carlos Quentin, and then stabbed a comebacker by A.J. Pierzynski to end the threat.
Facing Verlander is Gavin Floyd. He's 1-4 with a 6.02 ERA over his last seven starts, and in his last time out, he blew the kind of lead he's quite unlikely to get tonight. If he doesn't straighten up, his name might join Edwin Jackson's in the rumor cycle.
I guess what I'm trying to say is ... the second half may very well start Saturday.