The San Francisco Giants will try for their first three-game winning streak in over two months when they continue a three-game interleague series at the Chicago White Sox on Saturday. Pablo Sandoval snapped an 0-for-39 plunge - the longest hitless streak in San Francisco history - with a three-run homer to start the scoring in Friday’s 9-2 win in the series opener.
Joe Panik followed up a remarkable 12-for-15 stretch in a series at Colorado with a base hit and a run scored for the Giants. The White Sox have dropped five straight - all at home - while allowing an average of 7.8 runs. San Francisco right-hander Jeff Samardzija returns to Guaranteed Rate Field for the first time since he won 11 games with the White Sox in 2015. He will try to reach double figures in wins for the third straight year when he gets the nod opposite fellow veteran James Shields for Chicago.
TV: 7:10 p.m. ET, NBCSN Bay Area (San Francisco), WGN (Chicago)
PITCHING MATCHUP: Giants RH Jeff Samardzija (9-12, 4.31 ERA) vs. White Sox RH James Shields (2-6, 5.72)
Samardzija has allowed four earned runs in 36 innings in his career against the White Sox and enters this meeting on a roll. The Notre Dame product is 5-1 with a 2.60 ERA over his last eight starts after dominating St. Louis last Saturday with seven innings of one-run ball and nine strikeouts. He has a 4.58 ERA in 20 career games (18 starts) at Guaranteed Rate Field and an identical mark in 14 road starts this season.
Shields is 8-25 over the last two years after suffering back-to-back losses at Minnesota and versus Cleveland in his last two turns. The 35-year-old gave up four runs in both affairs, although he lasted 6 1/3 innings versus the Indians on Monday to match his longest start of the year. Shields owns a 2.62 ERA in seven career starts against the Giants, although Panik is 9-for-20 with three doubles against him.
1. The White Sox placed LHP Carlos Rodon (shoulder) on the 10-day disabled list, and he will miss the rest of the season.
2. Giants RH Mark Melancon (forearm), who signed a $62 million contract this offseason to be the closer, will have surgery next week and miss the rest of the season.
3. Chicago 3B Nicky Delmonico is 0-for-9 with four strikeouts in three games since returning from a wrist injury.
PREDICTION: Giants 6, White Sox 5