Sunday Spotlight: Chicago White Sox Pitcher Gavin Floyd

JJ SSenior Writer IApril 13, 2008

Detroit's lineup has been projected to score 1,000 runs.

They've put up monster numbers in 2007, reached the World Series in 2006, and are feared by all of major league baseball.

That is, except one pitcher.

That pitcher is Gavin Floyd.

Floyd, the White Sox' fifth starter and owner of a career 6.00 ERA, has started seven games against Detroit while with the White Sox, and his stats are absolutely incredible.

Floyd is 3-0 with a 2.43 ERA (ten earned runs in 37 innings), a 1.22 WHIP, 25 strikeouts and eight walks.

There seems to be no explanation for Floyd's success against Detroit, considering that he hasn't had a whole lot of success against other teams. 

Floyd's always had good stuff, featuring a low-90s fastball, an excellent curveball, and a decent changeup.

For some reason, that combination comes together perfectly every time he pitches against Detroit.

On Saturday, that combination nearly resulted in a no-hitter against the Tigers, as Floyd took a no-hit bit into the eighth inning before Edgar Renteria broke it up with a solid single to right.

Say what you will about the struggles of this Detroit offense—any time you have a no-hitter through 7.1 innings against a lineup that contains Renteria, Magglio Ordonez, Miguel Cabrera, Ivan Rodriguez, and Placido Polanco, you're doing something great. 

Unfortunately for Floyd, the White Sox don't take on the Tigers again until July 25 in the Motor City.

If Floyd wants to take the leap that White Sox GM Kenny Williams has hoped for since trading Freddy Garcia for him and Gio Gonzalez following the 2006 season, he's going to have to pitch well against the other top offenses of the American League.

These teams include New York, Toronto, Los Angeles, Tampa Bay, Cleveland, and Minnesota (say what you will, they always hit the White Sox well).

Before the year began, I said the White Sox would need to get excellent performances out of John Danks, Jose Contreras, and Floyd if they wanted to contend in the American League.

Danks has had one good and one bad start, Contreras has been his usual frustrating self but has got results, and Floyd has been nothing short of stellar in his first two starts.

While it's still early in the year, the performance of Floyd is something to be very excited about if you're a White Sox fan.