Detroit Tigers infielder Jonathan Schoop is 0-for-3 with two strikeouts against Chicago White Sox right-hander Lucas Giolito this season after beginning his career versus the Chicago ace with six hits in 16 at-bats.
Chicago is hoping recent trends can prevail Saturday. Schoop enters Detroit’s road matinee against the White Sox with five multi-hit games in his past six contests. His bat was especially sizzling on Friday, as Schoop went 4-for-4 with two home runs and five RBIs in a 9-8 loss.
While the Tigers have lost three of four following a three-game home sweep of the New York Yankees last weekend, Schoop continues to provide a consistent jolt.
“It’s all about winning, you know what I mean?” Schoop said. “So I go 4-for-4 today but we lose, so it’s not as fun. So sometimes, you’d rather go 1-for-4 and you win. It’s more fun.”
The White Sox led 6-1 and 7-2 on Friday, but the Tigers stormed back with a six-run seventh inning to grab an 8-7 advantage.
Eric Haase blasted a go-ahead, two-run home run, his fifth home run in 17 games with Detroit.
The White Sox would welcome a similar boost from rookie Gavin Sheets, who was recalled from Triple-A Charlotte on Thursday to replace Andrew Vaughn, who landed on the injured list due to COVID-19 protocols.
With reigning MVP Jose Abreu entrenched at first base for Chicago, Sheets has spent time working in the outfield, starting 10 games there this season to diversify his portfolio. He was not on the alternate site roster in 2020 and was eager to make up for lost time.
“A lot of hard work went over this last year to get ready to be in the outfield, to put myself in this position where I could do both and help this team out in any way possible at both spots,” Sheets said. “It’s extremely satisfying to be here, just with the way last year went and then to be here now and helping a team that’s in first place in the division right now, it’s incredible.”
Friday’s feel-good win, Chicago’s seventh in nine games, only boosted spirits in the clubhouse. Yermin Mercedes snapped an 0-for-25 skid with a walk-off, ninth-inning single against Jose Cisnero, while Yasmani Grandal hit two solo home runs and Nick Madrigal added another to give the White Sox seven solo shots in the first two games of the series.
Giolito is 5-3 with a 4.37 ERA in 10 career starts against Detroit, with 65 strikeouts in 57 2/3 innings. Giolito (5-4, 3.73 ERA) lost to the Tigers on April 27 in his lone appearance against them this season, surrendering four runs on five hits in 6 2/3 innings with three walks, seven strikeouts and two home runs allowed.
Lefty Tarik Skubal (2-7, 4.59 ERA) gets the call for the Tigers as he looks to build on Sunday’s victory against the Yankees, when he pitched six scoreless innings of three-hit ball with three walks and eight strikeouts.
Skubal lost to the White Sox in his lone career start against them last season, allowing four runs on seven hits — including a home run — in two innings.
–Field Level Media