Jose Abreu is streaking along and the American League-leading Chicago White Sox are following suit, having won three in a row and nine of their last 11. After driving in three runs in the series opener, Abreu carries a seven-game hitting streak into the second contest of a three-game set versus the visiting Boston Red Sox on Wednesday.
Abreu ripped an RBI triple in the first inning and added a two-run double in the eighth as Chicago recorded a 4-1 triumph on Tuesday. The 29-year-old Cuban has five straight two-hit performances and is 13-for-29 in his last seven contests, but is 0-for-6 versus Wednesday starter Clay Buchholz. Hanley Ramirez belted a solo homer to extend his hitting streak to eight games, but the Red Sox mustered just three more hits – all singles – en route to suffering their second loss in nine outings. Xander Bogaerts has hit safely in five straight games and 11 of his last 12.
TV: 8:10 p.m. ET, ESPN, NESN (Boston), WPWR (Chicago)
LINE HISTORY: The Red Sox opened as slight favorites for this contest and the odds have yet to move. The total opened at 8.5 and has also been stable since being released. View complete line history here.
Red Sox – 3B P. Sandoval (Out For Season, shoulder).
Athletics – RF A. Garcia (Probable Wednesday, hamstring), RP K. Loe (Eligible July 1, suspension), C K. Smith (15-Day DL, back), C A. Avila (15-Day DL, hamstring).
WEATHER REPORT: With weather expected to impact almost every other game on the board Wednesday, perfect baseball conditions are expected on Chicago’s South Side for their game against the Boston Red Sox. Clear, warm (upper 70’s), with a slight breeze (5 mph) blowing in from the left field foul pole.
UMPIRE REPORT: Tim Timmons will be handling home plate duties on Wednesday evening in Chicago. Timmons’ only two times behind the plate with Buchholz on the mound have played Under and Clay has had great performances. On the flip side, the home team has won six of the last eight games involving the White Sox with Timmons calling balls and strikes. Timmons has never been behind the plate for a Carlos Rodon start.
HOT FAN BATTLE:
PITCHING MATCHUP: Red Sox RH Clay Buchholz (0-3, 6.51 ERA) vs. White Sox LH Carlos Rodon (1-3, 4.33)
Buchholz allowed five runs for the second straight start and fourth in five turns on Thursday in a 5-3 loss to Atlanta. The 31-year-old hopes to bounce back versus Chicago, against which he owns a 2-2 mark with a 3.38 ERA at U.S. Cellular Field. Buchholz’s last meeting with the White Sox didn’t go so well as he saw two balls leave the yard and permitted four runs in seven innings to take the loss.
Rodon moves up one day to take the ball in place of veteran left-hander John Danks, who was released by Chicago on Tuesday after going 0-4 with a gaudy 7.25 ERA. The 23-year-old Rodon looks to bounce back from his second subpar performance in three outings, as he yielded six runs on eight hits in seven innings of a 6-3 setback to Baltimore on Friday. Rodon, who has yet to face Boston in his career, has fanned seven batters in each of his last two outings.
* Red Sox are 4-0 in their last 4 games following a loss.
* Red Sox are 0-6 in Buchholz’ last 6 starts.
* White Sox are 5-1 in their last 6 home games vs. a right-handed starter.
* White Sox are 5-1 in Rodons last 6 home starts.
* Under is 9-0 in Red Sox last 9 games vs. a left-handed starter.
* Under is 5-0 in White Sox last 5 home games vs. a right-handed starter.
COVERS CONSENSUS: 62% of the public picks are on the side of Carlos Rodon and the White Sox. The Under is picking up 60% of the total wagers.
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