White Sox open series vs. McCarthy, A's tonight

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White Sox open series vs. McCarthy, A's tonight

Chicago White Sox (60-50) vs. Oakland A's (60-51), 7:10 p.m.

The White Sox welcome the Oakland As to U.S. Cellular Field tonight hoping to bounce back from a series loss to the Royals and will try to increase their one-game lead over the Detroit Tigers in the American League Central while theyre at it.

The availability of first baseman Paul Konerko for tonight is in question after suffering a mild concussion on Tuesday night against the Royals. He missed Wednesday's game and will be re-evaluated today. If he is not available, he may wind up on the seven-day disabled list.

The As enter this series after winning consecutive games and taking their three-game set with the Angels and are 17-8 since the All-Star break. Cuban center fielder Yeonis Cespedes has been on fire since the break, sporting a .408 batting average, .455 on-base percentage and 1.086 OPS which includes five home runs and 20 RBIs.

Pitching matchup

White Sox -- Gavin Floyd (8-9, 4.43 ERA): Floyds last start didnt begin well (41 pitches in the first inning), but he settled in and gave the Sox 6 13 hard-fought innings in a game thy eventually lost to the Angels in 10 innings on Saturday. The only time Floyd faced the As this season (April 24), he took the loss despite allowing just an earned run on two hits over 7 13 innings of work.

As -- Brandon McCarthy (6-2, 2.54 ERA): McCarthy will be on the mound with the As for the first time since June 19 thanks to right-shoulder soreness. In that June start he tossed seven shutout innings, allowing two hits and walking one while striking out five against the Dodgers.

They said it

Hes got great stuff. But usually it seems like youre going to get a pitch or two to hit. Tonight we did, but we didnt do anything with them. He didnt make mistakes. Adam Dunn on Jeremy Guthries eight shutout innings on Wednesday night

In case you missed it

Heres a quick recap of the latest White Sox news:

White Sox opponents no longer holding 'track meet'
White Sox have been feeling the Royal pains
White Sox deal minor leaguer Kuhn to Arizona
Konerko has mild concussion, could be placed on DL

Preview: Chris Sale faces Jose Quintana, White Sox Tuesday on CSN

Preview: Chris Sale faces Jose Quintana, White Sox Tuesday on CSN

 

The White Sox take on the Red Sox on Tuesday, and you can catch all the action on CSN and live streaming on CSNChicago.com and the NBC Sports App.

Coverage begins with White Sox Pregame Live at 6:30 p.m. Be sure to stick around after the final out to get analysis and player reaction on White Sox Postgame Live.

Today’s starting pitching matchup: Jose Quintana (2-6, 4.82 ERA) vs. Chris Sale (5-2, 2.34 ERA)

Click here for more stats to make sure you’re ready for the action.

— Channel finder: Make sure you know where to watch.

— Latest on the White Sox: All of the most recent news and notes.

Joe Maddon thinking shake-up for Cubs? ‘I have no idea what that would be’

Joe Maddon thinking shake-up for Cubs? ‘I have no idea what that would be’

SAN DIEGO – Joe Maddon looked down at the desk, shook his head and didn’t hesitate when asked if he was thinking about making some lineup changes to jolt the Cubs.

“I have no idea what that would be,” Maddon said after Monday’s 5-2 loss to the Padres at Petco Park. “We’ve tried everything possible. Guys have been rested. We’ve given guys days off. These are our players. I have all the faith in the world.”

The defending World Series champs are a .500 team through the Memorial Day checkpoint, but Maddon projected calm from the manager’s office to the cameras, expecting that message to filter out toward his clubhouse.

But this wasn’t the red-hot Dodgers pushing all the right bullpen buttons and executing a game plan almost flawlessly. The Cubs had Jarred Cosart on the ropes – and bases-loaded opportunities in the first, second and seventh innings – but still couldn’t deliver the knockout punch against a last-place team.

The Padres gave up 10 walks while the Cubs went 1-for-10 with runners in scoring position and left 11 men on base.

“We came off a 7-2 homestand,” Maddon said. “Everybody loved us a couple days ago. Now all of a sudden, we’ve had a tough time scoring runs on the road. We just got to do better. That’s all this comes down to.”

[MORE CUBS: How Kris Bryant became the face of the never-panic Cubs]

Until Jason Heyward lined a 93-mph Cosart fastball into right field for a two-out, bases-loaded single and a 2-0 lead in the first inning, the middle of that homestand (May 21) had been the last time the Cubs scored without hitting a home run.

“Everybody’s proverbially trying way too hard,” Maddon said. “(Don’t) try to hit homers. Really, again, take what they give you. Play with the middle. You got to convince them to do it. They got to do it.

“It’s not complicated. You can see the big swings coming out of our zone when just a single would do. That’s it. We did it before. We can do it again. We just got to keep talking. But then you have to use the velvet hammer as opposed to a real one. Otherwise, you have no chance whatsoever.”