White Sox

LIVE: After Dunn homer, Sox still trail 6-4


LIVE: After Dunn homer, Sox still trail 6-4

Sunday, May 1, 2011
Posted: 10:58 a.m.

Associated Press

Zach Britton set a Baltimore Orioles franchise rookie record for wins in April.

A matchup against the woeful Chicago White Sox may only help his growing confidence.

Britton will try to win his third straight start Sunday and send the light-hitting White Sox to their fifth consecutive loss.

Britton is probably sorry to see April end after going 4-1 with a 2.84 ERA in his first month as a major leaguer. The 23-year-old left-hander has quality starts in four of five outings and is leading the club in wins.

"He's handled it pretty well for a guy with limited experience," manager Buck Showalter said. "We like the things he's doing right now."

No rookie starter with the St. Louis Browns or Baltimore Orioles ever won more games in April than Britton, who went six innings against Boston on Tuesday, allowing one run and five hits in a 4-1 victory.

"I really don't get that nervous out there," Britton said. "I don't know what it is. It's not that I have a huge ego or anything. I have a lot of confidence that I can get out of the jams, and if I'm out there getting all worried I think the situations blow up. So I try to take my time and take a couple breaths and get after it."

Britton takes the mound after Chris Tillman became the latest pitcher to shut down the White Sox in Baltimore's 6-2 victory Saturday.

After scoring five runs in the seventh inning in Friday's 10-4 win, Baltimore (12-13) had another big inning Saturday, scoring four in the eighth en route to its fourth win in five games. The inning featured a passed ball and error on Chicago catcher A.J. Pierzynski and a two-run single by Vladimir Guerrero.

The White Sox (10-18) have lost 14 of 17, scoring three or fewer runs 14 times during that span. They also have dropped four in a row overall, six straight at home and finished April with a club-record 18 losses for the month.

"Right now we're not scoring a whole lot of runs, but I think that is going to turn around, I really do," said Saturday's starter Phil Humber. "I've got all the faith in the world in these guys. ... Hopefully it turns around for us pretty quick."

In a particularly frustrating series of at-bats Saturday, Chicago had no outs and the bases loaded in the sixth, but scored only one run on a sacrifice fly.

Alex Rios homered in the ninth - just his third hit in the last 37 at-bats.

Manager Ozzie Guillen will return to the dugout Sunday after completing a two-game suspension related to comments made on Twitter following his ejection in Wednesday's loss to the New York Yankees.

Despite his team's struggles in the opening month, Gavin Floyd (3-1, 3.60) looks to win his third straight start after setting a career high in April victories.

Floyd gave up two runs, four hits and struck out a season-high 10 in eight innings of a 3-2 win over the Yankees on Tuesday.

The right-hander will try to extend that success to May against a team he's pitched well against. Floyd is 3-1 with a 2.55 ERA in five starts against the Orioles, including two wins last year. He allowed two runs over seven innings in each.

Baltimore shortstop Robert Andino is 7 for 14 with a home run in his last four games.
Copyright 2011 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Luis Robert leaves Arizona Fall League game with injury

Luis Robert leaves Arizona Fall League game with injury

White Sox prospect Luis Robert headed to the Arizona Fall League to get more playing time after injuries limited to 50 games in 2018.

He just got hurt in the Arizona Fall League.

Robert is playing with the Glendale Desert Dogs in the AFL and left Friday's game with an injury.

It's not clear what the injury was, but Robert walked off on his own power. He also has pulled out of the Bowman Hitting Challenge (a modified home run derby) that will take place Saturday.

Robert, the No. 4 White Sox prospect and No. 44 overall prospect according to MLB Pipeline, was 1-for-3 in Friday's game before exiting. He has hit safely in all four games in the AFL, going 5-for-17 (.294) with a walk and three strikeouts, but no extra base hits.

The 21-year-old is the third youngest player on the team and the AFL is a respected offseason league for prospects. A good showing from Robert would be a sign that he is beginning to develop his talent into playable tools.

The injury could be minor so no need to ring the alarm bells yet, but the AFL season is barely more than a month long. Even a short-term injury could prevent him from making up for some of the lost playing time from the 2018 minor league season.

Sonny Gray is available: Could he be a one-year stopgap for the White Sox?


Sonny Gray is available: Could he be a one-year stopgap for the White Sox?

The White Sox have a hole or two to plug in their starting rotation. Could Sonny Gray be an answer?

New York Yankees general manager Brian Cashman said Friday that he's looking to trade Gray away from the Bronx this winter.

Gray isn't as attractive an add as he was a few years back, when he was coming off a sensational 2015 campaign that saw him post a 2.73 ERA and log 208 innings. He went to the All-Star Game and finished third in the AL Cy Young vote that year.

Since, he's been less successful. He made just 22 starts with the Oakland Athletics in 2016 and had a 5.69 ERA. The following season, he started with a strong 3.43 ERA in 16 starts for the A's before the midseason trade that sent him to the Yankees, where he made 11 starts with a 3.72 ERA. This season didn't go too well, earning Gray a move to the bullpen. He finished with a 4.90 ERA in 30 games, only 23 of those being starts. He threw just 29.1 innings over his final 10 appearances of the season, three of which were starts. He had a 5.26 ERA with 50 walks in 113 innings as a starter in 2018.

Those numbers won't leap off the page (in a positive way) for anyone, but there's no doubt that a potential deal for Gray would be a low-risk move for the White Sox. For a team looking to add 40 percent of a starting rotation, being able to do so cheaply — be it from a dollar or prospect standpoint — would be a good thing, especially if the strategy ends up being to simply add one-year fill-ins while Michael Kopech recovers from Tommy John surgery and Dylan Cease makes his way to the major leagues.

However, Gray's 57-walk total from the 2018 season could be something the White Sox would want to stay away from. After all, White Sox pitchers led the AL with 653 walks this season. They also had five of the top 21 walk-issuing pitchers in the Junior Circuit: Lucas Giolito led the league with 90, James Shields was third with 78, Reynaldo Lopez was fifth with 75, Hector Santiago was 15th with 60, and Carlos Rodon was 21st with 55. Gray slotted in right ahead of Rodon.

But Gray has obviously produced results in the past, and whether the White Sox are looking to simply plug the holes in the 2019 staff or potentially find a sign-and-flip candidate for the 2019 trade deadline — he's slated to hit free agency after the 2019 season — Gray could fit that bill. One thing's for sure: He's available.