After opening their seven-game trip with a winning series, the Chicago White Sox hope that momentum helps them fare better against the Los Angeles Angels than they did last weekend.
The White Sox look to match a season high with their third straight victory Thursday night against the Angels.
Chicago (17-21) ranks among the worst in the majors in batting (.236), runs (136), and average with runners in scoring position (.222), but it pounded out a season-high 14 hits in Wednesday's 9-4 win at Minnesota. Adam Dunn homered twice and Dayan Viciedo hit his second in as many games for the White Sox, who totaled 36 hits while taking two of three from the Twins.
"Pitching obviously wins you games, but as far as the energy level and things like that, if the team is hitting, then the energy level will be up," Dunn said after Chicago's highest-scoring game of the year.
"Hopefully it carries over and this is the start of something good."
Dunn is 4 for 8 with three homers and six RBIs in the last two games after going 3 for 32 without an RBI in his previous nine.
"He's a guy you're excited to see up. When he gets hot, it's fun to watch," said Dylan Axelrod, Wednesday's winning pitcher.
Dunn, however, is 1 for 25 with 12 strikeouts in his last seven versus Los Angeles (15-25).
Viciedo is batting .444 with six RBIs in six games after missing three weeks with a strained left oblique. He went 5 for 8 last weekend while Chicago dropped two of three at home to the Angels, scoring in just four innings during the series.
Though they snapped a five-game overall skid to Los Angeles when Chris Sale tossed a one-hitter in Sunday's 3-0 victory, the White Sox have lost three straight and six of seven in Anaheim.
Scheduled Chicago starter Jose Quintana (2-1, 3.72 ERA) allowed three runs, including two-run homer to Mike Trout, in six innings of a 3-2 loss to the Angels on Saturday. The left-hander has lost his only two career starts against Los Angeles despite a 2.45 ERA.
Quintana will match up a second straight time with Jerome Williams (2-1, 3.06), who gave up two runs in 6 2-3 innings Saturday.
"I didn't really have my best stuff but I battled through it any way possible," said Williams, who is 2-0 with a 2.75 ERA in three starts versus Chicago.
The right-hander will make his third straight start in place of Garrett Richards, who had replaced injured Angels ace Jered Weaver but has been demoted to the bullpen.
Los Angeles followed its success in Chicago by dropping two of three at home to Kansas City. Trout homered for the second straight night Wednesday as the Angels lost for seventh time in 10 home games, 9-5 to the Royals.
The Angels recorded 33 hits in the series but stranded 22 runners, including 11 in the finale.
"I thought our at_bats were good, we took some walks when they were there," manager Mike Scioscia said. "But we couldn't get the one big hit with runners in scoring position to get us back close and give us a chance to take a lead."
Trout is batting .368 with six home runs and 17 RBIs in the last 15 contests. He's batted .341 with three homers in 12 games against the White Sox.
The Associated Press News Service
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