A showdown for the division lead in the American League Central lost a bit of its luster when the Chicago White Sox and Detroit Tigers were sideswiped on the way to the starting line.
The Tigers will look to regroup from a three-game sweep at Kansas City when they host the White Sox in a three-game set beginning Friday night. Chicago lost three of four games in Baltimore but still managed to extend its lead in the division to three games over Detroit.
The Tigers managed to scrape out only one run in the final two contests against the Royals to drop three games behind Baltimore for the second wild card spot. Detroit has won seven of 11 meetings and defeated the White Sox four straight times, including a three-game sweep last month at Comerica Park. Right-hander Jake Peavy gets the start in the opener for the White Sox - the fifth time he will face the Tigers this season - and will be opposed by Doug Fister.
Pitching matchup: White Sox RH Jake Peavy (9-9, 3.09 ERA) vs. Tigers RH Doug Fister (7-8, 3.67)
Peavy will vie for his first win since Aug. 1 when he takes the mound Friday. The 31-year-old tossed seven solid innings in his last outing, but settled for a no-decision in Chicago's 9-8 victory over Seattle. Peavy fell to 3-3 in his career versus the Tigers after yielding four runs in seven innings in a 4-2 loss on July 20.
Fister saw his three-game winning streak come to an emphatic end after yielding seven runs in eight hits in 3 2/3 innings versus Baltimore on Aug. 19. The 28-year-old then missed his next start due to a strained right groin muscle, but has been cleared to start after pitching without issue in a bullpen session on Tuesday.
With back-to-back three-hit games, White Sox 2B Alexei Ramirez has 10 RBIs while hitting safely in nine of his last 10 games.
Tigers 3B Miguel Cabrera is 10-for-21 with three homers, five RBIs and six runs scores in his last five games against Chicago.
White Sox C A.J. Pierzynski is mired in an 0-for-17 slump.