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Jun 19, 2024 8:28 am

White Sox turn to Garrett Crochet in bid to win series against Astros

Garrett Crochet

Solid starting pitching continues to be a recent strength for the Chicago White Sox despite a major-league worst 54 losses.

The White Sox will turn to ace left-hander Garrett Crochet (6-5, 3.16 ERA) to start Wednesday’s game against the visiting Houston Astros.

Thanks to Tuesday’s heroics from rookie righty Jonathan Cannon, though, Chicago will be in position to win a series for the first time since mid-May.

“Houston has always been a great team,” White Sox catcher Korey Lee said. “Obviously, it feels great to win after a long road trip (seven games) like that. We played good baseball in Seattle. We played good baseball in Arizona. We just have to keep things going now that we’re at home in front of our fans.”

Cannon saw to that on Tuesday, coming one out short of a complete-game shutout in Chicago’s 2-0 victory in the series opener on Tuesday.

Consecutive two-out singles in the ninth spelled the end of the night for Cannon, who scattered seven hits while throwing 106 pitches in a career-high 8 2/3 innings.

Otherwise, Cannon had the blessing of manager Pedro Grifol to go the distance, if their dugout interaction in the bottom of the eighth was any indication.

“Wasn’t much of a conversation,” Cannon said. “He looked at me and I’m like, ‘I got it.’ I’m glad he has that confidence in me to go out there.”

Houston has lost five of its past eight games. Left-hander Framber Valdez and two relievers allowed just two hits on Tuesday, both singles, but the Astros’ attack couldn’t produce any clutch hits. Both White Sox runs scored on Andrew Vaughn groundouts.

The Astros stranded seven runners while finishing 0-for-5 with men in scoring position.

Alex Bregman and Trey Cabbage collected two hits apiece for Houston, which was without right fielder Kyle Tucker (right shin contusion) and designated hitter Yordan Alvarez (family matter).

“Wish we could have them here. But they’re just not,” Astros manager Joe Espada said. “We’ve got to find ways to score when they aren’t in the lineup. We are capable of scoring when they aren’t in the lineup.”

Alvarez, who has driven in 15 runs while hitting .365 in June, could return to the mix as early as Wednesday, Espada said.

Houston is hopeful to sustain the momentum of right-hander Hunter Brown (3-5, 5.00 ERA), who enters on a 13-inning scoreless streak while winning his past two starts. Brown scattered five hits and nine strikeouts in seven shutout innings Friday in a 4-0 victory against the Detroit Tigers.

He’s been especially effective behind his sinker.

“I think the swings I’m getting are better than the swings I was getting before I had it,” Brown said. “My whole arsenal. I’m happy with where that pitch is at. It’s something I’m going to continue working on and find good spots to use it. I like the way that it’s been performing, no doubt.”

Brown is 1-0 with a 4.76 ERA in one career start against the White Sox.

Crochet is 5-1 with a 1.36 ERA over his past nine starts. He’s faced Houston once in relief during his career, taking the loss after allowing one run in one-third of an inning.

–Field Level Media

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