White Sox-Blue Jays Preview

The Toronto Blue Jays got off to a good start this season thanks

to a strong rotation.

Following an ugly performance in their last game, the Blue Jays

will try to bounce back Thursday night when they close a four-game

set against the Chicago White Sox.

Toronto (6-3) entered the week having won five in a row and

coming off a three-game sweep of Baltimore. But the Blue Jays have

since dropped two of three to Chicago (4-5), which had lost 10

straight in Toronto coming in.

After Ricky Romero held the White Sox to one hit over eight

innings the night before, Brandon Morrow gave up seven runs

Wednesday in an 11-1 loss, leaving with no outs in the fifth after

Carlos Quentin’s grand slam.

Quentin finished with six RBIs while Andruw Jones homered for

the third time this series and had three hits.

Romero’s outstanding start came after Brian Tallet struggled

Monday, giving up six runs in six innings. The three have combined

for a 7.50 ERA in the series after the rotation had a 3.00 ERA over

the first six games.

The Blue Jays already announced one change to the pitching staff

before Wednesday’s game. Kevin Gregg is replacing Jason Frasor as

the team’s closer for now after Frasor blew the save in Monday’s

11-inning loss.

“I just had a talk with him, we’re just going to reverse the

roles a little bit until Frasor can get back to where we think he

should be,” manager Cito Gaston said.

Dana Eveland (1-0, 0.00 ERA) will try to get the Toronto back on

track when he takes the mound. Eveland came from Oakland in an

offseason trade, and had a strong debut against Baltimore on

Saturday, allowing five hits over 7 1/3 innings of a 3-0 win.

The left-hander has made one start against the White Sox,

allowing four runs in 4 2/3 innings of a 4-1 loss in 2008 while

with the Athletics.

He’ll look to cool off Chicago, which has won three of four

after a four-game losing streak in which it scored 10 runs. The

White Sox were hitting .186 through their first five games but have

boosted their season average to .227 after recording 15 hits

Wednesday.

Jones has settled in following a rough start, going 6 for 14

with five RBIs in the series after starting 1 for 8 in his first

four games.

Chicago is looking to win its first series in Toronto since

taking two of three Aug. 4-6, 2006.

The White Sox will hand the ball to Freddy Garcia (0-1, 2.57),

who pitched seven innings against Minnesota on Saturday, allowing

two runs, three hits and five walks in the 2-1 loss.

The runs came after Garcia allowed a seventh-inning homer to

Jason Kubel, but manager Ozzie Guillen was pleased with how the

right-hander fared.

“A lot of people had doubts on Freddy, including myself on the

way he pitched in spring training,” Guillen said. “I think Freddy

Garcia proved everybody wrong.”

Garcia is 6-4 with a 5.50 ERA in 13 starts against the Blue

Jays, but he has not faced them since 2006.