Red Sox hot, confident entering series with White Sox

MLB

Despite their nine-game winning streak coming to a close, the Boston Red Sox have plenty to feel bullish about as they get set to welcome the Chicago White Sox for a four-game series beginning Friday.

The Red Sox fell 4-3 to the Minnesota Twins on Thursday afternoon for their first loss since dropping to 0-3 on April 4. Boston’s Alex Verdugo hit a game-tying, three-run double in the eighth inning before Adam Ottavino allowed the winning run to score in the bottom of the ninth.

The defeat brought to an end Boston’s longest winning streak since 2018, but the fight the club showed was still reason for positivity in the clubhouse postgame.

“It’s been fun,” said starter Garrett Richards, who allowed two runs, both unearned, over five innings on Thursday. “I told you guys earlier in the year that this was a sneaky good team and we’re going to do our thing on a daily basis. At the end of the year, we’ll be where we are.”

The White Sox enter Friday with some spark of their own after the benches cleared in a 4-2 loss to the visiting Cleveland Indians on Thursday. Adam Eaton was called out for coming off the bag on a play at second base before shoving Indians shortstop Andres Gimenez after feeling he was pushed off, starting the fracas.

“Things kind of escalated a little bit there,” Eaton said. “I let the emotions kind of get the best of me there just because I felt like any time you get pushed off the bag when you are safe, it’s a little frustrating.”

Chicago has alternated wins and losses across its past eight games.

Right-hander Dylan Cease (0-0, 3.86 ERA) is scheduled to start for the White Sox in the series opener after testing negative for COVID-19 following a symptoms scare. Right-hander Nick Pivetta (2-0, 3.27) goes for the Red Sox.

Rain is in the forecast for the Boston area all day Friday. Should the teams play, the Red Sox can expect to be at full strength after resting designated hitter J.D. Martinez and utility man Marwin Gonzalez from the starting lineup Thursday.

“We’ve just got to be careful with the workload with all those guys,” manager Alex Cora said.

The White Sox on Thursday welcomed back star shortstop Tim Anderson from a stint on the 10-day injured list with a strained left hamstring. Anderson went 2-for-5 in his return.

Cease will make his third start of the season, having pitched 4 2/3 innings in each of his first two outings. He allowed one run on four hits against the Kansas City Royals last time out, on Sunday. Cease, in his third year, has never faced Boston.

Pivetta went six innings in his last start, getting the win against the Baltimore Orioles on Sunday despite allowing four runs on seven hits. Pivetta will make his first start against Chicago.

The Red Sox will play their next 10 games at home. The White Sox are kicking off a six-game road trip.

–Field Level Media

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.