Texas Rangers right-hander Nathan Eovaldi saw a streak of eight consecutive winning decisions end on Thursday despite making a quality start
On Tuesday, Eovaldi will aim to begin a new run as visiting Texas tries to secure a series win against the Chicago White Sox
Rolling behind a 12-hit attack and 5 2/3 strong innings from left-hander Andrew Heaney, the Rangers defeated Chicago 5-2 on Monday for their third straight win. The contest was the opener of a three-game set
As Texas pitching coach Mike Maddux sees it, the key to the strong season by Eovaldi (9-3, 2.59 ERA) is his work ethic. Eovaldi is coming off a Thursday outing against the Los Angeles Angels in which he struck out nine while tossing seven innings of three-run ball.
"Man, he's been fantastic," Maddux said. "He's a guy in the past that I've seen pitch more on video than live. And I always tried to pair the pitchers that were on the staff and try (to see) how they would cat-and-mouse hitters. Nathan Eovaldi would pop up, I would just skim right through him ... because our guys don't have that kind of stuff.
"They don't have what he brings to the table, so to witness this guy every five days in his work ethic and his dedication to his craft has been more impressive than his stuff. Then he goes out there and produces like he does, it's no surprise. I mean, he's a consummate pro that he's been carrying the heavy load for us."
Chicago will turn to right-hander Dylan Cease as the team tries to avoid an eighth loss in 10 games.
After using the Monday contest as a bullpen game, the White Sox could use a strong outing from Cease (3-3, 4.31 ERA), who has pitched to a 2.16 ERA in his first three starts this month but has three no-decisions to show for it
Cease allowed two runs in 5 1/3 innings on Thursday while matching a season high with 10 strikeouts. However, the Los Angeles Dodgers rallied from a 4-0 deficit to beat the visiting White Sox 5-4 in 11 innings
"I left pitches up, so I was disappointed I didn't finish it off," Cease said after that outing. "I had a couple walks that were regrettable, but for the most part I commanded the zone pretty well, got ahead in the count and got a few strikeouts. It was pretty solid."
Cease is 3-0 with a 2.66 ERA in four career starts vs. the Rangers, with 29 strikeouts in 20 1/3 innings
Eovaldi is 2-2 with a 5.57 ERA in five career games (four starts) against the White Sox
Josh Jung had a home run among his three hits for the Rangers on Monday, while Ezequiel Duran had two hits
Andrew Vaughn, Luis Robert Jr. and Elvis Andrus collected two hits apiece for Chicago. Vaughn and Robert hit back-to-back home runs in the sixth inning.
White Sox shortstop and leadoff man Tim Anderson remains day-to-day after leaving the Saturday game due to a right shoulder injury
--Field Level Media