White Sox-Athletics Preview

Mark Buehrle said the Chicago White Sox would continue to do

their job even if they were mathematically eliminated from the AL

Central race. A loss to the Oakland Athletics on Tuesday night

could put them in that position.

Buehrle goes for his second straight victory in the Bay Area as

the White Sox try to avoid their first eight-game losing streak in

more than three years.

With a chance to get back in the Central race, Chicago (79-71)

lost three straight at home to division-leading Minnesota last

week. The White Sox fell nine back with Thursday’s 8-5

series-ending loss.

“Even if we are mathematically out of it, we aren’t going to

give up,” Buehrle told the White Sox’s official website after

yielding a season high-tying six runs and eight hits in that

defeat.

Trailing Minnesota by 11 games with 12 remaining, the White Sox

will be eliminated from the division race Tuesday with a loss and a

Twins victory over Cleveland. Chicago has dropped 11 of 13.

“Today was kind of a lousy game – very bad,” manager Ozzie

Guillen said following Monday’s 3-0 loss to the A’s. “I’m

disappointed in the losing streak because it came at a bad time for

us.”

The White Sox’s last eight-game skid was Aug. 11-19, 2007.

Buehrle (12-11, 4.16 ERA) hasn’t won since Aug. 19, but he threw

a four-hitter in his last start at the Coliseum, a 5-1 victory July

23. That win marked the one-year anniversary of his perfect game

against Tampa Bay.

Buehrle was 0-6 with a 4.95 ERA in his first 10 starts in

Oakland.

While the White Sox face a nearly insurmountable deficit, the

A’s (75-74) are in a similar position, trailing Texas by eight

games in the West.

Although Oakland will likely miss the playoffs for the fourth

straight season, the maturation of Trevor Cahill (16-7, 2.84) could

pay dividends for many years. Despite beginning the season in the

minors, the 22-year-old right-hander is on the verge of becoming

the first A’s starter since Mark Mulder in 2004 to win 17

games.

The last A’s pitcher to win 17 in a season without an April

victory was Vida Blue in 1974.

Cahill, who is holding right-handed hitters to a major

league-best .184 batting average, is looking to rebound from a 6-3

loss at Kansas City on Wednesday when he surrendered six runs and

six hits over five innings.

“I didn’t have any idea where my fastball was going and my

changeup wasn’t cutting and running like usual,” said Cahill, who

went 13 scoreless innings in his previous two outings.

Cahill, 0-1 with a 3.74 ERA in four career starts against

Chicago, pitched seven innings in the July 23 loss, giving up three

runs – two earned – and four hits.

A’s catcher Kurt Suzuki, who is batting .458 (11 for 24) against

the White Sox this season, is 6 for 15 with a homer versus

Buehrle.

Oakland will try to win its fourth consecutive home series. The

White Sox have scored five total runs while dropping four straight

on the road.