Strong starting pitching has helped pace the Chicago White Sox during their latest winning stretch.
Gavin Floyd hopes to continue that trend while trying to end his own struggles against the visiting Toronto Blue Jays and lead the White Sox to a fifth consecutive victory Saturday.
Jake Peavy allowed a run in 7 1-3 innings and A.J. Pierzynski hit his 16th homer to lift Chicago (46-37) to a 4-2 win over Toronto on Friday.
Winners in 10 of 13, the White Sox have outscored Texas and Toronto 30-9 during their four-game winning streak. Chicago starters have posted a 2.22 ERA against the Rangers and Blue Jays.
The White Sox's last loss came Sunday at Yankee Stadium when Floyd (6-8, 4.91 ERA) gave up a pair of two-run homers and walked a season-high five on 122 pitches in 5 1-3 innings of a 4-2 loss.
"It's laboring to make pitches, trying to keep the team in the game, trying to grind through it," said Floyd, who had allowed nine hits and walked one over 13 1-3 scoreless innings to win his previous two starts.
The right-hander has not faced the Blue Jays since 2010, but he is 0-4 with a 7.45 ERA in five starts against them.
Pierzynski, meanwhile, is batting .355 with two homers and six RBIs in his last eight games versus Toronto. Left off the All-Star team, Pierzynski is 8 for 20 with four home runs and seven RBIs in his last five games overall.
Teammate Kevin Youkilis also is 8 for 20 while driving in eight runs in his last five for the White Sox, who hope to finally get the best of Toronto starter Ricky Romero (8-3, 5.35).
Looking to help the Blue Jays (42-42) avoid a third straight defeat, Romero is 3-0 with a 3.62 ERA in four starts against the White Sox. He gave up five runs - three earned - and allowed homers to Pierzynski and Adam Dunn in seven innings of a 9-5 win at Chicago on June 5.
This time, Romero is looking to get back on track after two horrendous outings.
The left-hander had been struggling for a while, allowing at least four runs in six straight starts, but yielded 17 runs, 18 hits and nine walks over nine innings while losing his last two starts. Romero was roughed up for eight runs and 11 hits in six innings of an 11-3 loss to Kansas City on Monday.
"You feel like you're in the quicksand," said Romero, who has a 7.24 ERA in his last six road starts. "Every time you just keep getting deeper and deeper and you don't know how to get out of it."
Adam Lind homered and had two of Toronto's six hits Friday.
"We didn't help our cause," manager John Farrell said. "Not many opportunities."
Lind is batting .209 overall but is 6 for 15 with two home runs and four RBIs in the last four games. He's 6 for 13 with two doubles and a homer versus Floyd.