for this game

AL Central hopefuls continue set in Chicago

Jun 4, 2011 - 2:42 PM (Sports Network) - The Cleveland Indians have been the story in the American League Central this season, and rightfully so. Two teams who are hoping to draw closer to them continue their three-game set this evening, as the Detroit Tigers and Chicago White Sox play the middle test of their series at U.S. Cellular Field.

With the Indians taking on the red-hot Rangers, this could be a prime opportunity for either Detroit or Chicago to gain some major ground in the division. On Friday, Chicago took advantage of that, as Carlos Quentin belted a three-run homer while Juan Pierre and Brent Lillibridge also went deep to lead the White Sox to a 6-4 win.

With the win the White Sox were able to bring their nine-game slide against the Tigers to an abrupt end.

Mark Buehrle (5-4) got the win in six innings for the White Sox, who were coming off a three-game sweep of Boston at Fenway Park. The starter allowed three runs on 10 hits with four strikeouts.

Casper Wells had a three-run homer for the Tigers, who had a four-game win streak stopped.

Detroit starter Andy Oliver (0-1) was touched for four runs on six hits and five walks over 3 2/3 innings.

Detroit might not spend much time in the loss column because trotting out to the hill tonight for the Tigers will be their horse, Justin Verlander. The hard- throwing right-hander bounced back from his worst start of the year on Sunday against Boston, as he scattered four hits over seven scoreless innings to get the win.

Earlier this season Verlander was able to get the better of the White Sox, as he limited the division rival to just three runs in seven innings. All three runs came on three solo home runs, but Verlander was able to overcome his long ball woes by striking out eight batters. He is 5-3 on the year with a 3.12 ERA.

While it was a victory, those have not come to often for him against Chicago. In 20 outings against the White Sox, Verlander is only 8-9 with a lackluster 4.51 earned run average.

Inconsistency has riddled many players on the roster for Ozzie Guillen and one of those players that seems incapable of strolling a steady line is Edwin Jackson, who will be on the hill tonight.

Unfortunately for the White Sox, they saw the bad version of Jackson in his last outing, as the right-hander was tattooed for six runs on nine hits in a matchup against Toronto. Although Jackson was clearly not sharp, he did not factor in the decision.

One of Jackson's poor efforts actually came against Detroit earlier this season, as the former Tiger was done in by his ex-team for eight runs -- seven earned -- on 12 hits and four walks in less than six innings.