The Chicago White Sox have managed to keep on top in a tight American League Central race, extending their lead over Detroit to two games by topping Oakland, 7-3, on Sunday. Toronto, meanwhile, is stuck at the bottom of a loaded AL East, having lost 11 of its last 14 games. The Toronto Blue Jays have split six games with the White Sox this season, with all six of those games being played in Chicago.
Toronto and Chicago have displayed plenty of power, ranking second and third in the majors, respectively, in home runs. The White Sox have five players with at least 17 home runs, including Adam Dunn, whose 31 round-trippers are one behind Josh Hamilton for the major-league lead. Edwin Encarnacion paces the Blue Jays with 30 homers, while Jose Bautista has 27. The difference between the clubs has been pitching — Chicago has gotten excellent starting pitching, while the Blue Jays rank 26th in the majors in ERA.
White Sox Blue Jays Betting
When: 7:07 PM ET, Monday, August 13, 2012
Where: Rogers Centre, Toronto, Ontario
TV: 7:07 p.m. ET, Comcast Sports (Chicago), RSN (Toronto)
PITCHING MATCHUP: White Sox RH Jake Peavy (9-8, 3.08 ERA) vs. Blue Jays RH Carlos Villanueva (6-2, 3.30)
Peavy didn’t get much run support during a midseason stretch that saw him drop six of seven starts, but he has recovered lately, going 2-1 with a 2.18 ERA over his last three outings. His lone win during the earlier slump came against the Blue Jays on July 6 (7 1/3 IP, 5 H, 1 ER, 7 K), improving Peavy to 2-0 with a 4.00 ERA in four career starts against Toronto.
Villanueva had won four consecutive starts before beginning August by finally suffering his first two defeats of the season on the road against Seattle and Tampa Bay. He has been fairly consistent since being added to the rotation in late June, giving up 15 runs in 40 1/3 innings over his seven starts. Villanueva is 4-0 at home this season with a 3.00 ERA.
1. The White Sox have dropped seven of Peavy’s last 10 starts, but Toronto is just 2-9 in its last 11 games against right-handed starters.
2. Villanueva has made three career appearances against the White Sox, giving up six runs (five earned) in eight innings.
3. Encarnacion has already set career highs in both home runs and runs batted in (79), and his current .293 batting average is also a personal best.