Looking to build on a needed victory that slowed down the surging Detroit Tigers, the Chicago White Sox now hope Michael Kopech can get back on track.
Kopech looks to avoid a fifth straight losing start when the White Sox aim for a series split against the visiting Tigers on Sunday.
Chicago swept a three-game set at San Francisco last weekend, but dropped two of three at home to Minnesota and the first two of this four-game series against Detroit. However, the White Sox flexed their offensive muscle early and got a strong eight-inning outing from Johnny Cueto during Saturday’s 8-0 victory.
Jose Abreu recorded a two-run double Saturday, and has hit safely in 14 straight games while batting .411 during his last 18 for Chicago, which is a disappointing three games under .500. The White Sox last won consecutive home games June 20-21.
“Just keep working hard and, hopefully, that brings wins,” White Sox star Tim Anderson, batting .483 during a 13-game hitting streak versus Detroit, told the club’s official website.
Chicago needs to start winning games for Kopech (2-6, 3.34 ERA) after losing his last five starts. The right-hander had a 1.92 ERA, while going 2-2, over his first 11 starts of the season. However, he owns a 6.86 ERA in losing his last four.
Kopech allowed six runs, all on a career-high four homers, plus four other hits, while also walking four and striking out five in 4 2/3 innings of Chicago’s 8-2 home loss versus Minnesota on Tuesday.
“(It’s) about getting back to the drawing board, figuring some things out,” Kopech told the White Sox’s official website.
“Just have to do a better job of executing. Sharpening some stuff up. We’re going to figure it out. It’s not like there’s any defined answer.”
Kopech lasted four innings at Detroit on April 10, allowing a run, two hits with two walks and three strikeouts over four innings of a 7-2 Chicago victory.
The Tigers, meanwhile, try to bounce back after their season-high six-game winning streak ended Saturday. Detroit outscored its opponents 37-16 during the winning run, but managed just six hits while being shut out for the 11th time in 2022 on Saturday.
Despite the loss, the Tigers remain in position to win their first road series from the White Sox since Sept. 3-5, 2018.
Continuing his back-and-forth campaign with the Tigers, Drew Hutchison (1-4, 4.30 ERA) makes a fourth start Sunday. The right-hander, who again refused a minor-league assignment late last month, had his contract purchased by the big club for a fourth time in 2022. He then allowed one earned run with five hits over five innings of an 11-4 win against Cleveland from Tuesday.
“I’m going to go out there and do the best I can,” Hutchison, who turns 32 in August, told the Detroit Free Press. “I believe in myself. I believe in the pitcher that I am. I’m here to help us win.”
Hutchison allowed two runs, five hits and two walks over four innings of a 5-1 loss to the White Sox on June 14. Chicago’s Luis Robert and Andrew Vaughn are each 3-for-4 against Hutchison.
Detroit’s Spencer Torkelson is batting a dismal .197 this season, but 2-for-6 with a double, two runs scored and an RBI in the series.
–Field Level Media