Jeremy Guthrie won't enter the Cy Young discussion this season, and there won't be a bust waiting for him in Cooperstown five years after he hangs his spikes up for the last time.
But don't tell that to the White Sox, who have been absolutely unable to figure out Guthrie the past two seasons. Literally. He'll take the hill tonight in Kansas City, and you can catch all the action tonight on Comcast SportsNet. Coverage begins
In his last six starts against Chicago, Guthrie is 3-0 with a 0.40 ERA. He has allowed two earned runs in 44.2 innings, has a WHIP of 0.76 and has struck out 31 batters. It's a remarkable run for a pitcher who, outside of those starts, is 15-16 with a 5.19 ERA over the last two seasons. The right-hander has been solid in 2013 (7-4, 3.72 ERA) but something about playing the North Siders brings out the best in the 34-year-old.
And though Robin Ventura said yesterday that his faith in hitting coach Jeff Manto has not wavered, going up against Guthrie may not be the best solution for a historically-bad White Sox offense. Furthermore, Guthrie has been dominant in 2013 at Kaufmann Stadium, posting a 5-1 record and a 2.79 ERA. He has won his last two home decisions and on May 4, recorded the first shutout of his career against, you guessed it, the Chicago White Sox.
Though the White Sox struggled against the Royals last season, losing 12 of 18 contests, they are 3-3 in 2013 against their fellow AL Central foes. Guthrie isn't the ideal candidate to face tonight given his off-the-charts numbers against them, but Hector Santiago's reinsertion into the lineup may help matters. In his last two starts since returning from bullpen duty, Santiago has allowed four earned runs in 11.2 innings over his last two starts. He pitched three innings of scoreless relief against the Royals on April 4.