The Chicago White Sox were victimized by good pitching in two straight losses in St. Louis this week. Don't expect things to get any easier over the weekend.
The leaders of the American League Central travel to the West Coast to take on the team with the best record in the majors in a three-game interleague set with the Los Angeles Dodgers. L.A. is getting it done with pitching with the second-lowest team ERA in both leagues.
In addition to a 3.12 ERA, Dodger pitchers are holding opponents to a .229 batting average. Not exactly the type of team you want to take on without your DH.
Lance Lynn and Jake Westbrook kept the Chisox bats at bay, save for Adam Dunn's 22nd homer of the season in a 5-3 loss to the Cardinals. The White Sox may need to manufacture runs against Dodger arms this weekend.
Chris Sale is on the bump tonight for Chicago, facing Clayton Kershaw. Sale has been red-hot in June, but Kershaw is the Dodgers' ace and struck out 12 Mariners in his last start. He's also his league's reigning Cy Young and Gold Glove recipient.
The White Sox desperately need a big start from Phillip Humber on Saturday night. Opposing him on the mound is Chad Billingsley, who just evened up his record at 4-4 with a 3.57 ERA. Billingsley has won his last two starts, giving up just two runs in his last 14 innings.
Sunday, Jose Quintana looks to keep up his run of solid starts against Chris Capuano, who paces the Dodgers' staff with an 8-2 record. He looked shaky in a five-inning start against the Angels, but he's 5-0 with a 1.66 ERA at home in 2012.
With the White Sox down a hitting going into a National League park, it's going to be important for their starters to keep Chicago in these three games.