DETROIT – The Chicago White Sox and Detroit Tigers are both emphasizing that this weekend’s series will not decide the AL Central.
However, after taking the opener of the three-game set and with Max Scherzer taking the mound Saturday, the host Tigers have to be feeling good about where the momentum could be swinging.
Detroit moved within two games of first-place Chicago following a 7-4 win Friday. Delmon Young hit a tiebreaking, three-run double in the seventh inning for the Tigers, while the White Sox (72-59) went 0 for 13 with runners in scoring position.
“We still have a ways to go, but obviously this is an important series without question,” manager Jim Leyland said. “Is it the end of the world one way or the other? No.”
Detroit (70-61), which had totaled one run in the final two losses of a three-game sweep at Kansas City this week, finished with 11 hits Friday – six for extra bases. Miguel Cabrera went 3 for 4 with a two-run homer.
Cabrera is batting .447 with four homers in the last nine games of the season series – seven of them victories for Detroit, which has won 16 of its last 19 home games versus the White Sox.
The Tigers now will give the ball to Scherzer (14-6, 4.13 ERA), who looks to win his fifth straight start.
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