White Sox look to take season series from Orioles

BALTIMORE — On Saturday, the Chicago White Sox will have the chance to accomplish something they haven’t done in 10 years — win a season series against the Baltimore Orioles

A victory for the White Sox would give Chicago a 4-2 lead in the season series against the Orioles with just one game left, locking up the win for the season.

The White Sox (58-89) did twice split a series with Baltimore (42-105) — in 2011 and 2015 — but have gone 10 years without actually winning one. That last happened when Chicago took five of nine from the Orioles in 2008.

Chicago also will try and stretch its winning streak to three in a row in Saturday’s game. They won the final game of a series in Kansas City Wednesday before beating Baltimore 8-6 in the first game of this series on Friday night.

Reynaldo Lopez (5-9, 4.22) of the White Sox and Baltimore’s Yefry Ramirez (1-5. 5.94) will be the starters in the middle game.

Lopez has pitched just once against the Orioles and has an 0-1 record with a 13.50 ERA.

Ramirez, a rookie right-hander, will be making his first start and appearance versus the White Sox in his career. He has pitched well at times this season but struggled more of late.

The White Sox showed plenty of power in Friday’s victory. Avisail Garcia and Omar Narvaez both hit two-run homers, and Ryan Cordell added a solo shot (his first major-league hit after going 0-for-15 to start his career) as Chicago won thanks to getting six solid innings from starter James Shields, who won on the road for the first time since Opening Day.

Shields said his teammates will keep on pushing right until the final game, and he likes how hard they’re working.

“We’re going to finish strong,” Shields said. “We’re going to play all the way until the end. They want to get better every day.”

The Orioles also showed some power in the loss, thanks to Trey Mancini, who came up with a multi-homer game on a rainy night.

He hit solo homers off of Shields in the second and fourth innings. Mancini now has 23 homers and 53 RBI this season after his first multi-homer game in 2018.

Injuries have put the Baltimore starting rotation in trouble. Andrew Cashner (knee) and Alex Cobb (blister/cut on middle finger of right hand) can’t pitch in the next few days, so the Orioles still have not posted a starting pitcher for Sunday’s series finale.

Rookie Luis Ortiz made his first major league start Friday but lasted just 1 2/3 innings before leaving with a hamstring injury after giving up three runs. So, that’s why everything remains up in the air for Sunday’s game.

“See how we get through the next two nights,” Orioles manager Buck Showalter said Friday. “I think we’ll probably have to wait until Saturday’s over and see who’s kind of left there.”

The White Sox did not make any player moves on Friday but Baltimore made two, recalling pitchers Donnie Hart and Evan Phillips from Triple-A Norfolk to bolster their struggling bullpen.