Giants-White Sox Preview
San Francisco Giants at Chicago White Sox
- The White Sox have lost seven of their last nine games and have been outscored 26-6 during their current four-game losing streak. Chicago has won four of the six all-time regular-season meetings between these clubs.
- The Giants have lost three straight and six of their last seven games. San Francisco has won all six of its interleague contests this season -- one of just two teams in the majors that have perfect records in interleague play this season (Oakland, 3-0).
- John Danks has allowed only five earned runs and has struck out 17 batters over his last four starts. Danks is 2-1 with a 2.66 ERA in three interleague starts this season.
- Matt Cain has allowed six hits or less in each of his last five starts and will be seeking his first career win over the White Sox (no decision in one start against them on May 18, 2008).
- Jose Abreu is hitting .314 at home this season compared to .219 on the road. Abreu leads all rookies with 19 homers and 51 RBI this season.
- Michael Morse is hitting .435 (10-for-23) during his current six-game hitting streak. Morse is hitting .182 in his career against the White Sox -- the second-lowest batting average in his career against any opponent (minimum 15 games).
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By JEFF MEZYDLO
(AP) -- San Francisco's Tim Hudson has the lowest ERA in the majors.
Chris Sale would lead the AL in that category had he not missed more than a month with an injury.
Two of the majors' top pitchers square off on Chicago's south side as the NL West-leading Giants look to snap a season-high four-game skid Wednesday against the White Sox.
Hudson (7-2, 1.81 ERA), who turns 39 next month, has been the star of the Giants rotation during the first 2 1/2 months of his San Francisco tenure. The right-hander has not yielded an earned run in three of his last four starts, going 3-0 with a 1.04 ERA.
His stellar start has come after he missed the final two months for Atlanta last season with a broken right ankle.
"I've always admired him from the other side, how well he competes," manager Bruce Bochy said. "I felt we were getting a front-line pitcher who will give us a chance to win on a consistent basis. He's done all we've expected and even more."
Hudson was on the mound for the Giants' only victory in their last eight games, allowing an unearned run in seven innings of a 7-1 win over Washington on Thursday. San Francisco (43-28) has since dropped four in a row while yielding 28 runs.
"I just try to go out there and give us a chance to win," Hudson said. "It doesn't matter that we lost three in a row or won three in a row. I feel like I put forth the same effort every time."
In the outing prior to suffering his season-ending injury July 24, Hudson beat the White Sox as he allowed four runs in 7 1-3 innings of a 6-4 victory at U.S. Cellular Field. His 9.00 ERA in five career starts there is his worst in any ballpark.
Sale (5-1, 1.97) has not pitched enough innings - 59 1-3 - to qualify to be among the ERA leaders but would rank third in baseball behind Hudson and Cincinnati's Johnny Cueto. Sale is 2-1 with a 1.69 ERA in five starts since returning from a flexor muscle injury.
The left-hander, who has never faced the Giants, plans to focus on himself and not Hudson.
"I try not to put too much emphasis on who I'm facing," Sale told the White Sox's official website, "but obviously (Hudson's) body of work over his career, especially over this past year and coming back from a big injury like that (makes him) really just being one of the most dominant pitchers in the game."
Sale was outdueled by reigning AL Cy Young Award winner Max Scherzer on Thursday, yielding one run and tying a season high with 10 strikeouts in seven innings of a 4-1 loss to Detroit. He gave up a homer for the third straight game after allowing one through his first six.
He's been brilliant in his last five home starts, surrendering three runs and nine hits in 32 innings with 43 strikeouts and four walks.
Gordon Beckham and Dayan Viciedo each hit two-run homers as Chicago (34-37) snapped a four-game slide with an 8-2 victory Tuesday. The White Sox have won four in a row versus San Francisco, which suffered its first defeat in seven interleague games this season.
Chicago's Adam Eaton is batting .400 in his last nine games and .355 in his last eight against the Giants.
Michael Morse is one of two Giants to have faced Sale, going 1 for 4 with a homer and three strikeouts. Gregor Blanco is 1 for 2 against him.
Updated June 18, 2014