TWINS (63-40) AT WHITE SOX (45-56)
7:10 p.m. ET; WGN, FSNO, MLB.TV
Chicago White Sox (+1.5) reliever Aaron Bummer enters each game with a negative connotation on his back.
While Bummer may not be able to help his downer of a surname, the good news for the White Sox is that he can control hitters.
Bummer has allowed one earned run and struck out five in his past seven games and has a 1.69 ERA in 32 appearances overall entering Saturday’s home game against the Minnesota Twins (-1.5). The durable left-hander remains motivated as he helps anchor the back end of the Chicago bullpen.
“Sustained success is goal No. 1,” Bummer told the Chicago Sun-Times. “No. 2 is to get better every day. The sky is the limit if I’m doing those. … I don’t care if it’s the first three outs, last three outs or six outs in the middle.”
Bummer, 25, compiled a 4.36 ERA over parts of two major league seasons before 2019. Diligence during the offseason and spring training has helped springboard him to a breakthrough this season.
Bummer has cultivated a sinking, two-seam fastball to accompany the rest of his arsenal, fueling Chicago’s optimism about his future.
“The past two years I showed glimpses of what I can do, glimpses of consistency and the life of the stuff I have,” Bummer said. “This year, with all the work I did in the offseason and having immediate success, yeah, it propels you forward. And it is rewarding to go through all that, and then to finally hit that rhythm … not just for two outings or a month but for the sustained success we all dream of.”
The White Sox are aiming to snap a four-game losing streak. Minnesota has won the first two games of the four-game set behind the latest doses of its season-long power.
When Max Kepler blasted a three-run home run during the second inning of Friday’s 6-2 victory, the Twins made major league history by becoming the fastest club to hit 200 homers in a season, accomplishing the feat in their 103rd game.
The Twins smacked five home runs in Thursday’s 10-3 win, marking the ninth time they have done so in a single season, another major league record. Nelson Cruz led the way with the first three-homer game of his career.
“A guy like Nelson Cruz doesn’t have to change his approach to try to hit a ball over the fence,” Minnesota manager Rocco Baldelli said. “He’s a gifted hitter who just happens to be a strong individual, and when he hits the ball on the barrel and puts a good swing on it, an under-control good quality swing, it has a chance to leave the yard and not by a little bit.”
Left-hander Martin Perez (8-3, 4.37 ERA) will look to stretch the Twins’ winning streak to three games as he opposes the White Sox for the first time this season. Perez is 3-1 with a 4.88 ERA in four career starts against Chicago.
Right-hander Ivan Nova (5-9, 5.49 ERA) is set to start for Chicago in his first appearance since defeating the Miami Marlins (+1.5) in a complete game on Tuesday. Nova yielded home runs to Cruz and Kepler as part of a 10-3 home loss to the Twins on June 29. He is 2-2 with a 4.26 ERA in five career appearances (four starts) against Minnesota.
–Field Level Media