Chicago White Sox
have watched one of their toughest opponents this season leave town, they'll welcome one that hasn't been quite as successful
at U.S. Cellular Field.
look to beat the
for the fifth time in seven tries at home on Friday night when they open their final three-game series of 2008.
Chicago (81-65) dropped seven of eight contests to Toronto, including three of four this week - a stretch capped by Thursday's
6-4 defeat. The bullpen, which allowed two runs and five hits in 1 2-3 innings, compiled a 7.94 ERA during the set.
drove in two runs, and
's two-run homer was the 538th of his career for the
, who have lost four of their last five overall to fall to 3-4 on their current 10-game homestand.
"We have the type of team that can win seven in a row, six in a row, but we have the type of team that can lose five or six
in a row. That's the way we've played all year long,"
Streaky play outside the division has kept the
from dominating in the AL Central. Chicago comes in with a one-game lead over second-place Minnesota.
, though, are 37-23 versus Central foes, posting a 9-6 mark versus Detroit. The Tigers, meanwhile, are just 27-36 against
the division with
(10-15, 4.78 ERA) going 4-10 in 17 starts versus those clubs.
"We all have to do a better job against our division - all of us, not just Verlander," manager Jim Leyland told the Tigers'
official Web site.
On Saturday, Verlander didn't factor in the Tigers' 6-4 win at Minnesota. He gave up four earned runs and eight hits while
walking four over 5 2-3 innings.
"I felt like I made some progress on some of the things I'm working on," said Verlander, 2-6 with a 7.17 ERA over his last
The right-hander is 2-8 with a 6.01 ERA in 13 career starts versus the
, losing four of five this year. Dye is 13-for-36 (.361) with four homers and seven RBIs, while Thome has hit .281 (9-for-32)
with six homers and 10 RBIs lifetime against Verlander.
He gave up five runs and six hits while fanning eight over 7 2-3 innings of a 5-1 defeat on Aug. 6 at U.S. Cellular Field,
where Verlander is 0-5 with a 6.14 ERA in seven career outings.
He looks to help the Tigers prevent a third straight loss after they fell 5-2 at home to Oakland on Wednesday.
drove in both runs.
Detroit (70-76), widely favored to win the Central, will kick off its final nine-game road trip of the year against
(10-8, 3.44), who has gone 0-3 with a 5.95 ERA over his last four outings.
The left-hander didn't earn a decision on Sunday despite limiting the playoff-bound
Los Angeles Angels
to two runs and five hits with seven strikeouts over 5 1-3 innings of a 3-2 home loss.
, though, have won four of Danks' five career starts versus the Tigers - a span in which he's 2-1 with a 4.80 ERA. He's beaten
Verlander twice this season.