Detroit Tigers (72-60) at Chicago White Sox (60-72)
Time/Place: 8:10 p.m. E.T.,U.S. Cellular Field
SB Nation blog: South Side Sox
Pitching Matchup: RHP Justin Verlander (11-11, 4.82 ERA) vs. RHP Scott Carroll (5-8, 5.05 ERA)
Scott Carroll never got the break he needed to make it as a quarterback, being back up at Purdue to the future NFL quarterback, Kyle Orton. He never made it with the Cincinnati Reds after being drafted in the third round of the 2007 amateur player draft. But when the Reds released him in June of 2012, he signed with the White Sox and, after spending most of the 2013 season on the disabled list, made the team this season as a non roster invitee.
Carroll holds the dubious distinction of holding the second lowest K/BB rate among American League pitchers with at least 100 innings pitched this season. He's not a strikeout pitcher. He has never faced the Detroit Tigers.
Justin Verlander will try to get back above .500 for the season following a four run, eight hit performance in Minnesota where he pulled out an 8- 6 win. He is 5- 8 with a 4.61 ERA in US Cellular Field for his career.
Offensively, Jose Abreu continues to run away with the American League's rookie of the year award, batting .363/.458/.516 for an OPS of .974 and a wOBA of .422 over the past month. While Abreu continues to rake, Adam Dunn continues to reek, hitting just .172/.226/.397 with a wOBA of just .268 in the same time frame.
For the Tigers in the past month, Victor Martinez leads the attack with a .352 average, slugging .500 with a wOBA of .397. JD Martinez and Miguel Cabrera are each batting above .300, while Torii Hunter is hitting .298 over the past 30 days. In fact, the Tigers
lead are second in the American league in runs scored since the All Star break.
Hitter to fear: Jose Abreu is 4 for 9 against Verlander, with a pair of home runs and an OPS of 1.556
Hitter to fail: Paul Konerko has a career line of .172/.250/.310 with 16 strikeouts in 58 at bats vs JV.
Outlook: The Tigers close out the month of August with a four game series in Chicago. The Tigers are a dozen games above .500, while the Sox are a dozen games below, but the two teams have split the season series so far, six games apiece. The Kansas City Royals have won eight of twelve against Chicago, accounting for the difference in the Central division race. Detroit will have to beat the lesser teams in their own division if they hope to win their fourth straight division title.
Prediction: Tigers win, giving Verlander a winning record once again